St Aidan’s Careers Fair

19 April 2016

Mike Ries and I travelled into Harrogate for the St Aidan’s Careers fair held in Constance Green on 10 March. Equipped with suitable materials and having set up our IOP neon light as a beacon we were ready to discuss careers in physics with the young men and women.

St Aidan’s Careers Fair

 
As soon as the doors were opened a determined young woman made a bee-line straight to our table and immediately asked questions about taking physics at University. For over the next hour both Mike and I were engaged in discussion with many visitors to the booth ranging from GCSE choices through to A-levels, degree level and beyond with both of us losing our voices.

One young woman, who was deciding on her GCSE subjects was very forthright. ‘Please explain how doing physics will assist me in my goal of becoming a neurosurgeon?’ Needless to state that answering that question was a pleasure. I did have to also advise one mum that it was OK that her son did not yet know what to do with his life. I also did have one mother say, ‘She wants to do physics, even though she is a girl!’ who immediately received a copy of the ‘It’s Different for Girls’ leaflet. One young man declared, ‘It is absolutely shocking that there are barriers to girls doing physics; who would believe it in this day and age?’ He is totally correct.

It was very interesting to listen to the reasons why they all were interested in and enjoyed physics from it is very hands on to, wanting to know how things work to ‘I can do the experiments!’ We also heard about their ‘Falcon Initiative’ to build a flight simulator and an upcoming visit to CERN.

Overall, we were both very impressed by the level of interest and maturity displayed by the students and I believe we were one of the busiest tables at the fair.