THE United Nations has 17 Sustainable Development Goals to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger, promote economic growth and prosperity, improve health and education and protect the planet.
Engineering has been identified as one of the professions that will be critical to achieving these goals. Turns out, engineers may just be the superheroes who save the world!
Last Friday, 95 students from Blayney High, Dubbo College, Scots All Saints College, Kinross Wolaroi, Bathurst High and MacKillop College attended an inspiring Power of Engineering workshop at Charles Sturt University.
Power of Engineering is an Australian not-for-profit organisation that works with universities, the engineering industry and schools to provide practical and creative experiences for young people to better understand engineering and how it affects our world.
It aims to shift the perception of engineering from being a field dominated by men, maths and hard hats to being an opportunity to innovate and find solutions.
The collaboration between Power of Engineering and Charles Sturt University Engineering forges important connections between our regional schools, students and industries. The aim is to encourage more women into science, technology, engineering and mathematics by providing early and practical exposure to engineering career opportunities.
On Friday, the students engaged in a full day of engineering workshops held in the impressive Charles Sturt University Engineering building. Industry partners Aurecon, Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), construction company CPB Contractors and global engineering company WSP provided staff who helped run various workshops with the students, engaged in conversation and participated in a panel discussion.
The students learned that engineering is all around them: it gives them access to the clean, fresh water they drink, the roads on which they drive and the buildings in which they learn.
A strong message from the panel discussion was that students should be resilient and should chase their dreams.
"I really want to study engineering when I finish school," said one student at the end of the workshop. "I want to help make a difference in the community".
The event was hosted by senior cadet engineer and Power of Engineering event project manager Emerie Anonical. Student engineer Ashley Hayden and cadet engineer Emmeline Rocks assisted throughout the day and Charles Sturt University engineering professor Dr Miao Li ran an offshore wind turbine workshop.
This was the fourth year Charles Sturt University has hosted Power of Engineering for regional schools and students.
Charles Sturt University Engineering is a radically different approach to undergraduate engineering education that focuses on human-centred engineering and diverse opportunities for students to explore authentic problems.
A report commissioned by engineering education and research global leader, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), identified Charles Sturt University as one of the top four emerging engineering courses in the world and has described the Charles Sturt degree as "completely rethinking what engineering educating should look like".
For more information on Charles Sturt Engineering, go to www.csu.edu.au/engineering/home.