Wednesday, 05 June 2019 11:48

Samsung shares the 'magic of Vivid Sydney' with students from regional Australia

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Samsung Electronics Australia has flown 24 students from South Australia’s Mount Burr to Vivid Sydney in an unforgettable journey that is all part of Samsung's effort to bridge Australia's STEM skill gap.

Samsung Electronics Australia, in partnership with Social Ventures Australia (SVA), has announced that it will host students from regional South Australia for the students’ first trip to the "Harbour City" to see the magic of Vivid Sydney.

We're told that "this will be the first time on an airplane for the majority of the 24 students who are from Mount Burr Primary School, Nangwarry Primary School and Glencoe Central Primary School, making it a trip they’ll never forget even before they land and take in the iconic sights of the ‘Big Smoke’.

"The schools are among 15 other schools included in the STEM Learning Hub, an initiative co-created by Samsung and SVA in 2017 which endeavours to bridge Australia’s STEM skill gap by providing students and teachers from low-socioeconomic communities access to Samsung technology and resources that they would otherwise not have had access to."

"Currently, a disproportionate number of school children in Australia’s low socio-economic communities do not have access to the same resources as their peers from metro cities. As a result, by the age of 15 students can be up to five times more likely to be low performers than a student in a higher socio-economic area (according to an OECD 2016 report entitled "Low-Performing Students: Why They Fall Behind and How to Help Them Succeed"). 

"These children are also less likely to develop their talent in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), where as many as 75 per cent of the fastest growing jobs will require these skills and knowledge (according to PWC's 2015 report, entitled "Future-proofing Australia’s workforce by growing skills in science, technology, engineering and maths".)

Josh Grace, chief marketing officer, Samsung Electronics Australia, said: “Breaking barriers and enabling new experiences through technology is at the heart of the Samsung brand. Samsung is committed to helping students realise their potential and achieve their dreams.

“Through our partnership with SVA we want to provide innovative educational experiences that use technology to complement traditional classroom practices and enable the next generation of thinkers with the skills required for the future of work. We are excited to have the Mount Burr students here in Sydney and hope they learn a lot and just as importantly, have a lot of fun!”

Samsung tells us that "the South Australian schools were selected by Samsung and SVA for the Vivid experience after demonstrating excellence in their STEM studies.

"To help the students prepare for Vivid they participated in a photography tour around Circular Quay with well-known photographer, Rob Mullaly. During the tour the students learnt how to take pictures on the Samsung Galaxy A-series smartphone so that they could capture Vivid Sydney in all its glory."

Anne-Marie Fitzgerald, Principal, Mount Burr Primary School, said, “Whilst we very much value the benefits of our small school and community we also understand the importance of providing our students with learning opportunities beyond our local area to broaden their experiences. The Samsung Vivid Sydney experience provides an exciting opportunity for our students to engage in purposeful learning beyond Mount Burr.”

Suzanne Cridge, director, Education, Bright Spots Schools Connection, SVA, said, “We want to see all children in Australia, no matter where they grow up, have access to great technology to support their learning. We are delighted that Samsung supports SVA’s STEM Learning Hub, which is helping create inspiring learning experiences for young people across the country.”

So, what is the STEM Learning Hub?

It is "part of a wider network of 42 schools which are included in SVA’s Bright Spots School Connection. Since the commencement of the Hub, more than 790 teachers and 8,000 students have participated in the program.

"All of the schools involved in the STEM Learning Hub have access to professional development, STEM-specific training and Samsung technology to advance their students’ knowledge, and respond to their changing education demands, equipping them with the STEM skills needed for future prosperity."

Samsung reminds us that it is "a partner of Vivid Sydney and has two technology-enabled experiences at this year’s festival including the Samsung Electric Playground and Samsung Galaxy Studio. Samsung’s experiences have proven to be among the most popular installations at Vivid Sydney, welcoming more than 60,000 visitors since it opened on May 24, 2019".

You can learn more info about Samsung Australia’s CSR program here and the STEM Learning Hub here.

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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