Who? The department of Electronic Engineering in Maynooth University was founded in 2000 and since then has earned a strong reputation in both undergraduate and post graduate work.
What? On site session with the Sallin’s branch of the Irish girl guides in the area of programmable robots.
Where? The laboratory in the Electronic Engineering building, Maynooth University.
When? Saturday 21st February 2015, 11:00am – 1:00pm.
Why? To provide the girls with an opportunity to experience some engineering with their peers as part of a fun environment and to showcase the types of activities they can undertake. To show them that it is easily possible to overcome the gender barriers associated with women in engineering. It was also a great opportunity for the department to engage with a volunteer group that supports children’s personal development.
Lecturer Andrew Meehan from the Electronic Engineering department and 2 staff members from the technical support team provided an exciting and informative session to a total of 21 girls, aged between 9 and 14.
The session began at 11:00am with a Lego Mind Storms robots series of experiments. As the robots are programmed to perform tasks based on sensor readings the girls had to quickly learn how to understand how coding worked and to develop small experiments to test the coding that they did.
This was an important day for the girls as it helped to open their eyes to the possibility of looking at engineering as a potential career and while there was a lot of fun, the guides were exposed to the important skills of programming , testing and asking questions to learn.