The Academy for Enterprising Girls Challenge is a national competition offering 5 teams of girls the opportunity to ‘pitch’ directly to the Minister for Women’s Economic Security with their best innovative and entrepreneurial solution to address the problem statement: How might we increase the uptake of vaccinations against COVID-19 in Australia?
Engaging students in this challenge provided Rivers Secondary College, part of the Rivers Academy of STEM Excellence the opportunity to meet key objectives of the program. A key initiative of the NSW Department of Education’s STEM Industry Partnerships Program, the Academy aims to increase STEM opportunities for female students and create equitable pathways that inspire them to embrace STEM learning, while building skills and knowledge that prepare them for working in and shaping the future.
Rivers Academy of STEM Excellence students, Ava Maddock and Linh Le Do were rewarded with one of the 5 “pitch” spots to present their solution - a vaccination plan named VaccineGo.
Their solution was a COVID-19 fact-based website which housed information about the safety and risks associated with the COVID-19 vaccine, including frequently asked questions about vaccination and contact details for local vaccination clinics.
The solution also incorporated an app, featuring an interactive game that challenged participants to work in groups and re-trace their contact history to identify “patient zero” as a way to show how quickly COVD-19 spreads and highlight the difficulties with contact tracing.