With an aim to encourage girls towards choosing science as their career, IIT Delhi has launched a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) mentorship programme for school-going girls.
The primary objectives of the programme, designed for class 11 girl students, are to train young students to think creatively about science and innovation, to provide them with novel hands-on experience in solving research problems, and to help them form a stronger knowledge foundation.
V Ramgopal Rao, Director, IIT Delhi said, “STEM needs to have more women participation. Through the mentorship programme, school girls will get exposure to some of the world-class laboratories and research work going on here. I am hopeful it will prove to be a turning point in their lives and they would be motivated to enter the world of science and technology and help society with their research work.”
Under this initiative, each school girl will be mentored by an IIT Delhi faculty along with his/ her research scholars. During the mentorship period, they will be exposed to foundational concepts in STEM disciplines, and also learn the experimental methods and techniques used in science labs.
“The programme will give girl students some required traction for getting into the fields of science and technology in the future. We believe that students should be exposed to scientific concepts at an early age, to be able to appreciate the rigour of academic research, and to build up the confidence to take up academics as a career choice when they grow up”, said Pritha Chandra, Associate Dean, Academic Outreach and New Initiatives, IIT Delhi.
There will be ten class 11 girl students of science stream in one batch, and this is going to be a three-level programme:
i) A two-week winter project, starting from the end of December 2021 and ending in early January 2022.
ii) An online lecture series, consisting of modules in chemistry, physics, biology, mathematics and some engineering branches. These lectures will be delivered by IIT Delhi professors during the period between Feb and Apr 2022. During this period, the students will also be interacting constantly with their mentors on their specific projects.
iii) Summer project (3-4 Weeks in May-June 2022), where the students will get hands-on experience in labs, and finalize their project reports with their mentors.
The project areas of the students will cover different disciplines of science and engineering such as computer science, chemistry, mechanical engineering, physics, and biological sciences. The first batch has 10 girls from different Kendriya Vidyalayas in the Delhi region. In the future, there are plans to have participation from students from other regions in the country and turn the programme into a residential one.