In2scienceUK is an award winning charity which empowers young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to achieve their potential and progress to science, technology, engineering, maths (STEM) and research careers. They do this through high quality work placements and careers guidance in order to support the innovators and pioneers of the future and allow them to discover their inner coder, data scientist or biomedical researcher. In2scienceUK exists to tackle the national challenge of educational inequality and the STEM shortage by providing young people from low-income backgrounds with the skills, placement opportunities and confidence to successfully progress to exciting STEM degrees and careers.
In2scienceUK work hard to ensure that young people who will most benefit from their programme are offered a place. Participants are selected based on their free school meals eligibility, family higher education history and deprivation levels in their local area. They work only with students attending non-selective state schools, and give priority to students with no other opportunities and from backgrounds underrepresented in STEM and in their subject of interest. Each year In2scienceUK receives over 1000 student applications and aims to expand across the UK in the next 5 years. The programme operates a robust evaluation process to assess the impact of the programme. To date, 75% of participants progress onto STEM degrees.
The programme consists of three distinct interventions, which are all designed to develop key skills, knowledge and confidence to increase science capital, and confidence and skills for success in the workplace:
Inspirational work placements and mentoring
For one to two weeks during the summer, young people are placed with a host and work alongside them. This gives them the opportunity to observe STEM professionals in the field, learn more about areas of STEM, and have a practical experience.
The young people work alongside researchers and professionals, participate in their projects, are able to speak to them about different science degrees, careers in science, and get advice they may not receive at school or at home.
For hosts it can provide a different and fresh point of view. It is a great chance to meet young people, share experiences with them, and give a valuable opportunity insights on how to reach a top university and a high skilled career.
Workshops on STEM careers and employability skills
Throughout the summer In2scienceUK also organises different workshops delivered by staff and STEM professional volunteers, that enhance participants' knowledge of different STEM career pathways and key skills essential to succeed.
Skills days on university access
Young people in the programme also receive despoke STEM careers advice, skills days, lectures and workshops focussed on developing their professional skills and confidence. Moreover, it provides students with admissions advice and personalised university application support to ensure they make informed choices and high-quality applications.
UCL's Access and Widening Participation Office partners with In2scienceUK to support their programme of work.