SCIENCE SISTERS: Robo gals Caitlin Kilmister and Kailee Butcher showing off their creation.
SCIENCE SISTERS: Robo gals Caitlin Kilmister and Kailee Butcher showing off their creation. ROSIE OBRIEN

Robogals show science is a great option

PLAYING with robots has been a great way to get girls involved in the sciences.

University of Queensland engineering mentors joined an excited group of about 20 children at Gladstone Library on Saturday for a Robogals workshop.

Engineering student Bianca Shurey said the aim of the group was to encourage kids to have fun and get creative with technology.

"A lot of the kids haven't worked with robots or the drag and drop computer system because it's not often offered in school," she said.

"Today has been all about self development, by testing their creations and problem solving to improve them.

For Kailee Butcher and Caitlin Kilmister building robots was something they were used to.

"We had robot workshops in Grade 6 and 7 where I used to make them by hand," Miss Kilmister said.

"We're in Grade 8 now and I'm hoping to get into Astrophysics or engineering."

UQ sponsorship leader Ashwini Balraves said because robotics and programming revolved around maths and engineering there was a general consensus that it was more suited to males, which she said was not the case.

"I find it crazy that only 11% of engineers are women and just 14% of enrolments in the courses are women," she said.

"Females show an alternate perspective in this profession and we're here to show them that science is a viable option."

For Ashwini, being a Robogal gave her great pleasure because she knew first hand how hard it was as a woman to study engineering.



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