Through the Biomechanics Research and Innovation Challenge (BRInC), Australian high school girls from diverse backgrounds will work with early career female biomechanists to develop their own biomechanics story.
BRInC aims to inspire and raise participation of high school girls in biomedical engineering, through focusing on the exciting field of biomechanics. Simultaneously, BRInC will provide awareness of entrepreneurial opportunities associated with this unique field.
Additionally, BRInC aims to grow the leadership capacity of current early career female biomechanists by giving them access to professional training and support to develop their expertise as STEM mentors and future leaders in biomechanics. The program will also build an inclusive and supportive professional network of Australian women in biomechanics.
The program is in collaboration with researchers from University of Canberra, University of Melbourne, University of Newcastle, Griffith University, University of Queensland and Central Queensland University, as well as BrainSTEM, a not-for-profit organisation that runs STEM based mentoring programs for high school students.
The BRInC Program will run again in Term 2 in 2023. We are currently looking for expressions of interest from mentors and schools.
During Term 2 in 2023, the high school girls will conduct a biomechanics project with the support and guidance of the mentors and attend a series of immersive workshops and masterclasses to build key STEM and life skills. The hands-on program will expose girls to the creative, applied field of biomechanics and increase their awareness of associated entrepreneurial opportunities.
Concurrently, early career biomechanists will access training and support to develop their expertise as STEM mentors and future leaders. They will also gain access to a professional network of early and mid-career female researchers in the field.
The program will be delivered Australia wide with a range of university and industry partners, including regional and metropolitan institutions. We aim to recruit a geographically diverse range of Australian based mentors from varied backgrounds and fields of biomechanics, to showcase this highly applied area of science. Year 9 and 10 girls from regional and remote locations, culturally diverse backgrounds, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, and girls with a disability are encouraged to participate as program mentees.
The project is in collaboration with BrainSTEM, an industry partner with extensive experience in STEM based mentoring programs, as well as Australian and New Zealand Society of Biomechanics ANZSB, the University of Queensland, the University of Melbourne, Central Queensland University, University of Newcastle and Griffith University.
As a BRInC Mentee you will get to work in a team of girls to develop your own biomechanics project and story. With the guidance of a mentor, you will use laboratory-based resources and access training on a weekly basis to gain hands-on experience in biomechanics and the biomedical engineering industry.
The program is organised in line with the Australian Government’s COVIDSafe principles and can be moved to on online format if required.
We look forward to working with the schools that have already signed up.Find out more
To conclude their BRInC 2022 journey, each team was asked to create a short video showcasing their research or innovation project, and to share their learning experiences with the other teams.
The mentors will attend training workshops that are designed to empower them to inspire and build confidence in the STEM capabilities of girls, as well as build their own confidence as STEM role models. The training will be delivered by BrainSTEM who are experienced in STEM mentor development.
The mentors will form part of a network of female biomechanists and biomedical engineers around Australia, who will provide ongoing professional support to each other.
The project is led by Dr Celeste Coltman from the University of Canberra together with seven other early career female researchers and ANZSB members across Australia - Dr Taylor Dick (University of Queensland), Dr Michelle Hall (University of Melbourne), Dr Crystal Kean (Central Queensland University), Dr Karen Mickle (University of Newcastle), Dr Laura Diamond (Griffith University), Dr Martina Barzan (Griffith University) and Dr Jayishni Maharaj (Griffith University).