800 Isle of Man Primary School Students learn more about Careers in STEM

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This September saw the Villa Marina welcome nearly 800 year five and six students from across the Island’s primary schools to find out more about exciting world of careers in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

The Villa Marina was divided into three zones: Engineering, Science and Tech, with 19 companies setting up interactive displays allowing students to learn the application of STEM in different industries and how what they learn in school applies to real life situations.

From building bridges, coding dancing robots, recording their own TV shows, generating electricity and building boats and ejection seats, to understanding how fibre optic cables let them play their TV games, there was something to engage each and every curious mind.

Feedback gathered by the Department for Enterprise through a post event survey revealed that teachers were impressed by the quality of activities, the enthusiasm of the presenters and the level of engagement that occurred throughout the day. There is an appetite amongst those schools surveyed to hold such events more frequently and in different formats.

The Department for Enterprise has released a highlights video of STEMfest 2022 to give parents and carers a glimpse into the day’s activities – and has pledged that next year’s event will be even bigger. 


STEMfest 2022- Isle of Man


Jo Richardson, Head Teacher at Onchan Primary School commented:

‘STEMfest 2022 provided the children with a fantastic opportunity to have hands-on experience with activities linked to STEM. This was a unique event which enabled local pupils to experience some of the activities that would normally be out of reach, as the Island does not have a dedicated science museum.’

The inclusion of STEM in our curriculum gives us an opportunity for high-quality, first hand learning that truly engages children. Working directly with many of our local industries gives us an opportunity to broaden children’s understanding of the many opportunities that are available on our Island and creates valuable links between the world of work and school.

From a school point of view, it was a first class learning opportunity and ticked all the right boxes. The activities were well planned and presented and the organisation of the event was excellent.’


Sarah Ennett, Iot Manager and Digital Skills Lead for Digital Isle of Man commented:

Negative stereotypes are holding girls and non-binary students back from considering STEM subjects, and consequently from the earnings and opportunities that these sectors bring. STEMfest is a key opportunity to address these assumptions from an early age.’

The Island’s future economic direction is heavily reliant on STEM based industries and it is vital that events like these are repeated and also made more frequent and more accessible to all our young people.’

I am grateful to the many institutions and companies that were involved in putting this event together and especially to our exhibitors for volunteering their time and resources to making this an event that the students will remember.’


David Hutchinson, Manager, Construction Isle of Man, an exhibitor in the Engineering zone at STEMfest 2022, commented:

‘The students as always are the stars of the show! They were attentive, interactive and polite throughout the day. It was a great experience and one we look forward to returning to next year.

Industry and Education cannot exist in silos, and in order to ensure we have a great pool of skilled workers in the coming years, we must encourage our students to start thinking about choosing STEM subjects. On our part we can do this by making STEM careers exciting and relatable, in our case it is literally about building bridges!’

The event was organised by the Department for Enterprise with support from the Awareness of Careers in Engineering Steering Group, Construction Isle of Man, LoveTech, members of STEM industries and the Department of Education, Sport & Culture. 


If your company or school would like to participate in next year’s STEMFest please get in touch with us at stemfest@gov.im.



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