STEM for Humanity
For: Year 10
Many people around the world struggle to survive on less than two dollars a day. STEM for Humanity explores some ways that Scientists and Engineers can work with communities in developing countries to support and improve their lives, in a manner that is sustainable within the community.
The STEM For Humanity program consists of three sessions. In the first session, students are introduced to a project called “Map Kibera” where a group of Geospatial Scientists worked with the community in Kibera, Kenya, to produce a map of their district. The information on the map was used to make the local government accountable to the needs of the thousands of people who live in Kibera. During the workshop students learn some basics of Geospatial Science: how global positioning system (GPS) satellites work and how maps are produced. They then participate in a data collection exercise using GPS units around the university grounds.
In the second session, students learn about the humanitarian application of 3D printers and use CAD software to create a 3D object that can be utilized in a disaster relief situation. For example, students may create a pipeline connection to restore water to communities in Nepal after a series of earthquakes, or an umbilical cord clamp for newborn babies in Haiti.
In the final session, students work in small groups, with each group assuming the role of an engineering team working in one of a number of developing countries. Their task is to produce a water filter, made from everyday materials, that can convert dirty water to cleaner water. The filters are presented, tested and evaluated.
The program concludes with a presentation of successful engineering projects in developing communities, to show how engineering can and does improve people’s lives, and profiles some of the groups that undertake this important work.
What will students do?
- Use GPS units to:
- Locate important infrastructure on the University campus
- Participate in an environmental survey
- Collect location data to add to a map of the university
- Investigate the complexities of producing a two dimensional map from a three dimensional object such as the Earth.
- Use CAD-based software to produce a 3D object that can be used in a humanitarian situation.
- Design, construct (within budget) and test a water filter made from everyday materials.
All activities are undertaken in the context of using STEM to improve people’s lives. Students learn how map making, satellite communication, GPS systems and 3D printing can be applied to solving environmental and humanitarian problems, and how using simple materials with sensible engineering processes can make dirty water clean.
- As this program is a practical activity, students and accompanying adults will be required to wear closed in shoes and appropriate dress.
- Outdoor components are also included in the program, so it would be advisable to bring hats and sunscreen.
- Teachers will receive confirmation of booking and pre-visit information.
Areas of study and research
- Health Research
- Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA)
- Centre for Cancer Biology
- Centre for Drug Discovery and Development
- Centre for Population Health Research
- Centre of Research Excellence for the Prevention of Chronic Conditions in Rural and Remote High Risk Populations
- International Centre for Allied Health Evidence
- Medicine and Device Surveillance CRE
- Quality Use of Medicines and Pharmacy Research Centre
and Social Sciences
- Art, Architecture and Design
- Communication, International Studies and Languages
- Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy
- Hawke Research Institute
- Asia Pacific Centre for Work Health and Safety
- Australian Centre for Child Protection
- Barbara Hardy Institute
- Centre for Research in Education
- Hawke EU Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence
- Centre for Islamic Thought and Education
- International Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding
- Research Centre for Languages and Cultures
- Zero Waste SA Research Centre for Sustainable Design and Behaviour (sd+b)
IT, Engineering and
- Future Industries Institute
- UniSA College