16th December 2009, 11:38am
Kayleigh picks up award for science journalism
Kayleigh, centre, receives her prize A Journalism student from the University of Lincoln has won a regional award in a project designed to inspire the interest of students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects.

Kayleigh Lawrence won the 'Best Over 16 Years Reporter' category in the STEM Student Journalist project for her report on the recent STEM Partnership Forum Event at the Nottingham Science Park.

The 21-year-old postgraduate student, who is studying for an MA in Science and Environmental Journalism at the University of Lincoln, based her article on interviews with keynote speakers Sir Alan Jones of Toyota and Semta (Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies) and Kate Bellingham, former Tomorrow's World presenter.

The STEM Student Journalist project is funded by East Midlands Development Agency (emda), through the East Midlands STEM Partnership and allows students to use their natural interest in the media to explore themes in STEM subjects.

Kayleigh, who is originally from Kempston in Bedfordshire, said she feels passionately about the need to improve the image of STEM subjects among young people.

"Trying to get young people interested in science and the environment can be difficult. Despite all the technology around us, unfortunately science just isnít seen as exciting," she said.
"There are industries out there, such as engineering, where there is a real shortage of people with the right expertise and thatís a great shame.
"I feel we need to generate greater interest in STEM subjects in this country and the East Midlands is working really hard to achieve this."

Andrew Morgan, emda's Skills and Communities Director, said: "The development of a love of science and technology among students is vital in ensuring that the East Midlands will have the stock of qualified scientists to maintain its future economic development and become a flourishing region. The STEM Student Journalist project allows students to engage with scientific subjects through an understanding of the media which is so important in this information age."

Kayleigh was presented with her prize Ė a certificate and an iPod - at the University of Lincoln by Jodie Delbridge, STEM Project Coordinator at emda, and awards judge Sally Baker, from sponsor bioKneX.

More information about the East Midlands STEM Partnership can be found at www.emstempartnership.org.uk
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