STEM careers workshop for students from under-represented backgrounds returns to Edinburgh

Dr Ollie Folayan, chair of Aberdeen-based AFBE-UK Scotland, says Transition has been a successful programme

A NOT-for-profit organisation promoting diversity and inclusion in STEM industries has announced the return of a signature event that prepares graduates for the world of work.

The Transition programme by AFBE-UK (Association for Black and Minority Ethnic Engineers) Scotland has helped thousands of attendees develop their career skills since launching in 2012.

It is the third time that the Aberdeen-based organisation will host the event in the Scottish capital. The aim is to get more people from under-represented backgrounds involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) careers.

Speakers will give presentations at the careers workshop at the David Hume Tower, University of Edinburgh, on Saturday, March 7. One of the speakers is Gonzalo Gutierrez, a senior petroleum engineer at Equinor, who will give a talk entitled ‘My Transition Story’.

A cash prize, courtesy of IChemE (The Institution of Chemical Engineers), will be on offer to the best candidate on the day following a programme including interview practice, job application tips and assessments.

Industry professionals offer expert feedback to those attending CV workshops and provide attendees with pointers on where to improve. A panel of experts will also ask attendees a series of competency-based interview questions to help build confidence, while an assessment encourages attendees to solve a problem as part of a team.

The seminar has proved to be an important factor in securing roles and building the confidence of young people seeking work in the STEM arena. A survey found that 70% of those who participated in the programme credited it with finding a relevant role, while 90% said that it had made them more confident in interviews.

The event comes hot on the heels of another successful Transition event and workshop at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen earlier this month.

Dr Ollie Folayan, chair of AFBE-UK Scotland, said: “The Transition programme is always an important one for us and to hold two in such a short space of time in two of the country’s largest cities shows that there is a desire for such an event.  We hope that those who attend will find that it is very useful in helping them secure a job in the STEM sector.”

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