Maintaining our commitment to develop STEAM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics), we would like to congratulate our team representing the School at the 2nd Annual Be Talent Steam Competition. Their RECICLAPLUS project got a special mention in the final.
Teaming up with some others from IES Cervantes, our students presented in a very articulate and fluent way, in both Spanish and English. The project looks to promote recycling and the use of public transport by using machines which reward citizens who opt for these kind of sustainable habits. We would also like to congratulate all the teachers who accompanied them through the competition, Ricardo López and Fiona Houghton from our own School, and Beatriz from IES Cervantes. They were able to witness how all the students worked closely together, making up a powerful team, understanding the subject matter perfectly and designing a strong project, in tune with environmental awareness. Be Talent STEAM is a collaborative platform set up by the Altran Foundation for Innovation. It aims to promote changes in educational models, co-operating with other sector stakeholders and trying to make sense of new realities associated with this Fourth Industrial Revolution, in which we find ourselves. The aim is to develop talent, creativity and innovation. It seeks to promote a sustainable technology education by encouraging STEAM teaching as key future levers. This should help youngsters develop future professional careers as well as improving their short-term job prospects.
This 2nd Competition for Socially Innovative Ideas, known as BeTalentSTEAM_SIM2, received a total of 70 proposed projects this year (around 80% more than in its first year). 10 finalists were chosen from 14 different education centres from across the Madrid Community. Each team worked together, coordinated by their teachers and coached by 50 mentors from the BeTalent STEAM network of Partners collaborating with the project. There were 28 different workshops during the Competition, all looking to find innovative solutions to strategic social issues linked to the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals.
On this occasion, the teams taking part tried to focus on finding ways of increasing the percentage of renewable energies, reducing the amount of waste generated and re-establishing a more sustainable use of the Earth´s ecosystems. They also worked on initiatives to guarantee equal learning opportunities for all, better access to housing and improved, more adequate basic services.
From each of the education centre pairings stemmed teams of between four and six students. These then worked together through the different workshops. They were able to develop a range of project management and coordination skills. Mathematics was used from a social perspective. Communication was used to transmit effectively and efficiently the aims of a project. And innovation skills were developed using Design Thinking methodology.
“Continuous improvement is a human and societal characteristic. Continuing to foster new generations with a value-added attitude, promoting innovation and commitment to Society are all part of our purpose. I would like to congratulate all of those taking part, for their enthusiasm, for their desire to improve and for their help in creating a better Society”, said Ignacio Babé, General Secretary and CEO of the Excellence In Management Club, as he handed out the awards.
The organisation also commented on the commitment shown by the participating teams and the very high level of the projects presented. A real note of positive encouragement to continue working hard to develop STEAM skills and talent as well as making Spain a more competitive, supportive and equitable country. This is a challenge, which according to the organisers, should involve everyone, schools, universities and families. But also public administration, companies and Third sector associations and representatives.