RedeSTEAM, Redeia’s challenge to promote scientific and technological vocations among 14- and 15-year-old girls, already has its winners: 30 students in the 3rd year of secondary education that have designed STEAM proposals to contribute to a more sustainable world.
The female students belong to academic centres in Castellón, Granada, Madrid, Málaga, and Santander and have taken part in five teams developing technological or scientific solutions to at least one of these challenges: Electricity, Telecommunications, and Sustainability. The jury has selected two winning projects per each challenge.
Among its initiatives are ideas and prototypes to improve and promote the recycling of urban waste, give a second life to metals and minerals in obsolete electronic devices, or recover ground damaged by forest fires. Furthermore, there is a project to improve energy efficiency in housing by using traditional architecture and energy from renewable energy. It is an initiative to promote sustainable mobility in cities and a solution to lower temperatures in classrooms without leaving a carbon footprint.
The winners will attend October Redeia’s Sustainability Days to collect their award and participate in workshops taught by a group of Big Van Ciencia scientists and researchers, who will continue to develop their STEAM vocations, like aerospace engineering and robotics, chemistry, and physics, for a more sustainable world or scientific creativity. Also, the winning centres will receive equipment and materials for STEAM-themed labs and classrooms worth €3,000.
The jury consisted of Elena García, a researcher at the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) and creator of the first infant exoskeleton, representing the Royal Academy of Engineering; Carmen Mayoral, from the ICB-CSIC Carbon Chemistry Institute, on behalf of the Engineers and Technologist Women Association; María Soler, Engineering and Construction director at Red Eléctrica; Eva Pagán, International Business CEO at Red Eléctrica; and Silvia Bruno, CTO at Redeia and director of the technological innovation platform Elewit.
An initiative within the STEAM Alliance with the Ministry of Education
In Spain, only 13% of students in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics are women. As a result, female talent is absent or a minority in productive sectors that are essential for the country and the transition to a sustainable, fair, and inclusive development model.
Occupational segregation perpetuates the gender gap, impacting negatively on the economy and contributing to creating a future without the plurality and wealth of visions and skills that the whole society brings. Schools have a key role to play in promoting girls' interest in STEAM subjects and reversing the gender gap in these disciplines.
RedeSTEAM was created within the framework of the "STEAM Alliance for Female Talent. Girls taking up science," of the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, to which Grupo Red Eléctrica and Power to Code are members. Thanks to this initiative, they join forces to shape an education and training system without gender stereotypes, which promotes women's empowerment in STEAM disciplines from a young age and contributes to eliminating the gender gap in access to these disciplines.