Tauranga Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Festival is a free to attend, family-orientated day of fun activities to celebrate and experience the wonders of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

STEMFest will be a world class festival, held in Tauranga, made up of a series of events throughout the second half of 2019, culminating in a main festival day on the 12th October 2019 that will be free to attend. Designed to be a celebratory experience that is engaging and inspiring. The approach will be audacious, exciting and fun, and its strength will be in bringing together groups of people who may not necessarily engage with each other in their day-to-day life with the aim of fostering a new love and passion for STEM.

Who is STEMFest for?

For families and whanau – it’s a recognised fact that parents, extended family and caregivers have an important role in influencing their children and their choices. Β By offering families and whanau the opportunity to learn and share in the experience of STEM together we can activate the seed even before children are exposed to any STEM activities at school.

For communities – STEMFest will have a broad appeal with a focus on engaging with communities that might not necessarily have access or fewer opportunities to learn about and experience the wonders of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in a literal sense. We will be collaborating and working in partnership with iwi community leaders and outreach representatives to ensure that there is content which will be relevant to the Maori and Pacific communities. We will demonstrate how STEM can link directly to Māori language, culture and identity through local tikanga, whakapapa, stories, and hands on demonstrations.

For girls and young women – STEMFest will be built around the key theme of making STEM inclusive and relevant to girls. They will be presented with opportunities to try new things and explore ideas and meet with role-models in a safe and inspiring environment.

Background

Ada Lovelace Day Indie Event

The concept for STEMFest was inspired by Ada Lovelace Day (ALD). Ada Lovelace was a mathematician who worked with Charles Babbage and was considered the first female computer programmer, before computers even existed, back in 1843

ALD is an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. It aims to increase the profile of women in STEM and, in doing so, create new role models who will encourage more girls into STEM careers and support women already working in STEM.

In 2018 there were ALD events held in:
Towns/cities: 109
Countries: 18
Continents: 6
with a total of 182 events around the world.

In 2019, Tauranga STEM Festival will be the first event of its kind to be held in New Zealand as part of the global celebration of Ada Lovelace Day.