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Empowerment through education: my STEM Ambassador journey

Published: Dec 17, 2018 3 min read

STEM learning

Danielle Flynn, STEM Ambassador, receiving award

I am a fourth-year degree apprentice at Jaguar Land Rover in Halewood. As the only female degree apprentice in my year, I feel passionate about raising awareness of STEM careers.

As a result, I became a STEM Ambassador in 2015. Since then, I have been into over 20 schools around Merseyside, running activities, leading presentations and representing women in such a male-dominated career.

Engineering opens so many pathways for life and it is important for me to inform children how the role is not only the 'mechanic boy' stereotype they may imagine.

To see disinterested faces change to keen, willing ones during presentations and activities is truly satisfying. Coming from a working-class background, I firmly believe that empowerment through education is the ultimate route out of social immobility; speaking to local students who were previously unaware of non-university routes into higher education has been extremely rewarding as many of them were keen to pursue an apprenticeship over other further education. I have reached out to students through Dragon's Den schemes and engineering workshops at local exhibitions around Liverpool.

I have also had many opportunities to speak publicly for which I am extremely grateful. For example, I was asked to give a speech to the women of Dagenham and Halewood for the 50 year anniversary of them walking out, striking for equal pay.

Additionally, I had the privilege of being a guest speaker for the Knowsley 'Women in Business' networking event thanks to Knowsley Chamber. More recently, I was asked to speak on television for Granada reports and BBC Radio Merseyside promoting engineering and our new car launch.

These opportunities have become available through my work as a STEM Ambassador and I would highly recommend for people to get involved - even if you don't think you're of use, you will be!

I am so grateful for the STEM Ambassadors programme for allowing my confidence to grow and getting recognised in work for the changes I am making. I have already been involved in so much and it makes me so excited for the future.

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