On the 22nd of March the centre welcomed all things ‘STEM Girl Power’ with a visit to the Garden’s Point campus from 56 of QLD’s high achieving grade 10 students as part of the ‘STEM Girl Power Camp.’

The STEM Girl Power Camp is an initiative of the QLD Government’s education department designed to empower high-achieving girls to enrich their STEM skills, visit innovative facilities and learn from industry experts. The department’s hope is that the program will invigorate female participation, enrolment, and ultimately employment in STEM fields as women are still under participating in comparison to their peers.

Dr Kathy Mackey, QA Manager and Program Manager of the STEM Girl Power Camp says that “After a week of immersion in STEM during the World Science Festival, the QUT workshops gave the girls a great opportunity to explore real world applications of the STEM disciplines and widen their perspective on STEM careers, beyond what is available to them in their regional schools.”

As public engagement and outreach is one of the cornerstones of our mission here at the Centre for Joint Biomechanics to transformation patient care in the orthopaedic industry, we welcomed the students and their teachers in a bid to inspire them and offer them a glimpse into the world of research.

Adj. Prof. Ashish Gupta highlighting some of our clinical outcomes to our Grade 10 visitors

PhD students Mr Arun Jolly, Mr Hossein Ahmadi, Mr Jinshuai Bai, and clinical partner and orthopaedic surgeon Adj. prof. Ashish Gupta were on hand to welcome to girls to the centre commencing with an interactive display at the Cube. Our eager visitors were then taken upstairs for a tour of the centre office and labs and introduced to the centre with an introductory talk from centre manager, Ms Maddie McIntyre and Program Lead Prof. Peter Pivonka.

The passion for STEM demonstrated by the girls and centre team was obvious with many interesting questions being asked about what we do, how we design 3D models, and how we are improving patient outcomes with 3D modelling and robotics to assist in surgery. We were also able to discuss the future of biomedical technology and surgical tools with the use of Virtual Reality (VR) with HoloLens 2 Mixed Reality Technology transforming the operating theatre to assist solve complex grafting problems and reduce the chance of errors and complications in shoulder surgery.

We hope the girls were similarly inspired by these new developments emerging from the centre and will take back these experiences to their communities to further inspire the future of leading biomedical engineers.

With camp activities taking place at a range of locations including Griffith University, Queensland University of Technology, University of Queensland, iFly Brisbane Indoor Skydiving and Cross River Rail, we would like to thank the Department of Education for the opportunity to showcase our research and give back to the science community.

Mr Hossein Ahmadi describing our work on shoulder biomechanics and in-silico modelling under Program 1