gemaker has created the ‘gemaker Future Woman in STEM Scholarship‘ to support a female student from a disadvantaged/rural background with the best answer to the question ‘What topic in Space do you like exploring?’. The scholarship enables the winner to attend the YMCA Space Camp in October.

This year, our scholarship winner is Ashleigh, a Year 9 student from Bonville, NSW. Ashleigh provided a very detailed and well researched response on the ways we are going to explore exoplanets. When she grows up, she wants to be an engineer at NASA designing rovers or spacecrafts like the Hubble Space Telescope.

At the YMCA Space Camp, Ashleigh will join several students in Years 7-9 who love Space! Over 5 packed days, campers will be immersed in Space and the Space Industry. They will answer questions like how do we get to Mars? How does Australia contribute to the Global Space Industry? What’s it like to be an astronaut? Highlights of the camp include:

  • Speaking to an Astronaut
  • Tidbinbilla Deep Space Centre to see the giant dishes communicate with craft at the edge of our galaxy
  • Mt Stromlo Observatory, where world respected researchers examine our solar system. Students will visit the inside of the massive telescope!
  • Learn to analyse and map the earth with Geospatial Intelligence using real time footage.
  • GeoScience Australia, where we will learn about their contribution to the Australian Space Industry
  • UNSW Canberra, where we will meet real life scientists who have worked on missions across the world, and who will run a hands-on day of activities from building rovers, to completing challenges in a simulated space environment!
  • A night under the stars with local Aboriginal business Thunderstone, who will share the centuries old stories about the significant connection indigenous people have to the sky and the stars
  • Questacon, to learn some of the Science behind Space, and get hands on in the exhibits after hours!
  • Program robots with Erica Hediger and the Creative Element

A note from Ashleigh:

Hi, my name is Ashleigh , I am fourteen years old and I live in Bonville New South Wales. I attend Saint John Paul College in Coffs Harbour and I am currently in year 9. I enjoy playing the saxophone and the guitar. I have always been interested in Science, particularly space and astrophysics. I enjoy reading, especially the science fiction genre. My favourite book series is the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. I also like playing Battlefront on the PlayStation. My favourite movies are the original Star Wars trilogy. I enjoy listening to 80s music and AC/DC and I’m saving up for an electric guitar. I enjoy travelling and would one day like to go on a trip around Europe. I have a fighting fish named Bruce (big Finding Nemo fan). When I’m older I want to be an engineer at NASA designing rovers or spacecraft such as the Hubble Space Telescope.