Ardagh girl guide Nora-May Pearman Howard on a 'Mission to Mars'

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Ardagh girl guide Nora-May Pearman Howard on a 'Mission to Mars'

Longford and Ardagh Girl Guide, Nora-May Pearman Howard, pictured at the DCU LEGO Education Innovation studio.

A Longford Girl Guide took part in a Mission to Mars Lego Robotics Summer Academy in Dublin City University (DCU) this week.

Nora-May Pearman Howard (age 14) of Ardagh Girl Guides joined members of Irish Girl Guides from around the country at the week-long course organised by the DCU Lego Education Innovation Studio.

During the academy the girls, aged 14-22, had hands-on experience making Lego robots, which they learned to manoeuvre using programming. They gained a range of skills in computational thinking, engineering and programming during the course, which was engaging and hands-on.

The course was designed to encourage the girls to take Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects in school and college and to consider pursuing careers in STEM.

Rosemary Steen, Director of Public Affairs at Eirgrid, told them: “To work in STEM you have to be open-minded, not afraid of change. Keep learning and growing. Try to manoeuvre around until you find what might work for you as a career.”

The girls also had a Skype call with Dr Niamh Shaw, who recently took part in a simulated Mars mission in the Utah desert. Dr Shaw is lecturer at the International Space University’s annual Space Studies Programme in Cork.

Nora-May said she enjoyed the course. “It’s been nice to learn more than just code languages,” she said. “It’s all been interesting.”

Irish Girl Guides welcomes new youth members from age 5+ and adult volunteers from age 18+. To find out more, see www.irishgirlguides.ie or tel: 01 6683898.