🔬 The Access Project is passionate about helping more women into science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) subjects. Last year 52% of our female students went on to study a STEM subject at university.
Annabel is a Year 12 student at one of our schools in the West Midlands. She joined The Access Project a year ago and is being tutored in Physics.
“Initially I joined because Maths is one of my weakest points and I knew that, so I wanted to target my issues with the subject. My tutorials have helped a lot. In the first two months my grade increased from D to a B straight away.”
“I like the fact that my tutorials are driven by me”
Annabel is interested in other STEM subjects, and her tutorials are helping beyond Physics. “The help I get from Physics overlaps with Chemistry and Biology, so my tutorials are helping with all three subjects.”
“I like the fact that my tutorials are driven by me. If I have an issue or I’m not confident about a topic, we focus on it straight away. My sessions are about what I want to do, rather than what would be part of the lesson at school. It’s helping a lot with stress, and balancing my work load as well.”
“I’ve had very strong female role models throughout my life and education”
For Annabel, seeing women working in STEM has been inspiring. “I watched a seminar on Women in STEM, and there was a woman who had done research at University of Birmingham. Hearing about her experience at university and the jobs that she got to do, that confirmed it for me. Then I started to focus on the production of drugs and medicine.”
“I’ve had very strong female role models throughout my life and education. And that has pushed me to do what I want to do, and not limit myself. I have a female Physics A level teacher, which is unusual. She has been very helpful and encouraging. She told me I could do three sciences for A level. And now I’m doing it and I really enjoy it.”
“I chose my career and worked backwards to what degree would get me there”
Annabel wants to study Biomedical Science at university. “I was very interested in Chemistry and Biology from the start. I’ve also always been interested in cancer research, and the way researchers go about testing for new drugs. Watching the Coronavirus pandemic made me very interested in how scientists are working to come up with the vaccine.”
“So I went to my UAO and explained that I am interested in this career, how do I go about getting there? I chose my career and worked backwards to what degree would get me there. And with my UAO, we came up with a list of courses that I can take.”
“I’m not sure what part of medical research I want to go into: vaccines, cancer research, or vascular dementia. But I know that the first couple of years of my course will go into all of that in great detail, and after that I will be able to decide.”