On the 20th of December, Monash Tech School had the honour of hosting the launch of the strategic relationship between Commonwealth Science and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Department of Education.
Both CSIRO and the Department of Education have a passion for improving STEM Education in Victorian while also supporting innovation and growth in both Victorian and Australian Industries.
This news is exciting not only for Monash Tech School, but all of the Tech Schools in Victoria as it will allow students to:
access CSIRO learning programs and experts,
access CSIRO equipment and facilities through the Tech Schools initiative, and
build industry connections.
The morning started off with the Deputy Premier and Minister for Education, The Hon James Merlino, being greeted by a service Robot, nick-named ‘Sally’, courtesy of Nicci Rossouw from Exaptec. The Minister for Education emphasised the importance of STEM education in Victoria and preparing students for the careers of tomorrow to an audience comprising students, teachers, principals, industry and researchers. CSIRO’s Chief Scientist, Dr Anita Hill, followed the Deputy Premier explaining the importance of STEM-skills and the amazing opportunity the strategic relationship will have for both students and Australian industries.
The Minister and CSIRO Chief Scientist were taken on an interactive tour of Monash Tech School by our Director Ashley Van Krieken and North East Victoria Region Regional Director Judy Rose where they had the opportunity to engage with students from our partner schools. Students presented the work and demonstrated several of the technologies they use in Monash Tech School programs, such as the Epilog laser cutter, WASP 3D Printer, Sphero robots and Tinkercad.
Importantly, our existing partnership between CSIRO and industry partners was also demonstrated. Students had the opportunity to discuss design prototypes of bionics, implants, and wearables they and their peers had created with neurosurgeon and Founder of Anatomics Dr Paul D’Urso. Paul in turn passed around to students copies of 3D printed implants his company has created for patients. On the adjoining tables, CSIRO’s Lab22 featured a Titanium 3D Printed heel made for Anatomics on an Arcam A1 metal 3D printer. Students also spoke with CSIRO scientists working on flexible solar materials and members of CSIRO’s Education and Outreach Division.
Mr Merlino then joined students as they took the pulse rate of a humanoid robot capable of conversing with its clinicians. Thanks to Joel Fleischman from Mentone Educational for supporting us in the development of our Superhealth program and for bringing along ‘Alex’.
Finally, the minister met with two of the BHP Billiton Science and Engineering Award participants Jory Braun and Dhruv Verma. Jory demonstrated his cycle signal to the Minister while Dhruv spoke about his system to monitor elderly people’s movements within their home. It was fantastic for our current partner school students to have an opportunity to hear from both Jory and Dhruv on their journey and experience.
We would like to thank all our partner schools, teachers and their students who came along for the morning as well as others that made the event run smoothly. Special thanks to CSIRO staff for taking the time to engage with and inspire those students, and several adults, attending.
We look forward to continuing our work with CSIRO, industry and our partner schools as we seek to deliver outstanding STEM education in Victoria.