New EY app encourages teenage girls to consider STEM career

02 February 2022 Consultancy.com.au 3 min. read

Following successful pilots in India and the United States, professional services firm EY is set to release a new app in Australia designed to encourage interest among teenage girls in the world of STEM.

Australia has been selected as one of seven countries for the roll-out of an app developed by professional services firm Ernst & Young which aims to encourage teenage girls to pursue a career in STEM – science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The EY STEM App release hopes to reach 100,000 girls over the course of the year, and forms part of the firm’s ‘Ripples’ corporate responsibility program toward a more equitable future.

Developed in collaboration with SkillsVR, an organisation dedicated to helping people unlock the potential through immersive learning regardless of literacy or location, the app features modules and activities focused on science and technology, such as space exploration, climate change, artificial intelligence and blockchain.

New EY app encourages teenage girls to consider STEM career

The free mobile platform will also cover topics on the future of work and present inspirational stories of women in STEM.

The app leverages gamified content and incentivised learning with points and rewards up for grabs on the completion of hundreds of individual tasks, such as watching a video, answering thought-provoking questions or carrying out an experiment off-line. The activities on the app were developed in collaboration with a number of leading academic institutions and non-profit organisations, including the UN and World Economic Forum.

The roll-out, which over the year further includes Ireland, Canada, the UK, Philippines, UAE and New Zealand, follows a successful pilot in the US and India, where over 7,000 girls aged 13 to 18 engaged with the app. According to the firm, 98 percent of participants enjoyed using the app, and the study found that competence, perception of value, commitment towards, and interest in STEM improved by an average of at least 30 percent across the categories.

“Advancing girls’ skills and interests in STEM is vital to closing the gender gap,” said Julie Linn Teigland, EY EMEIA Area Managing Partner. It’s crucial that women and girls have the opportunity to realise their full potential as leaders and change-makers in a world increasingly enabled by technology. We’re proud of the success the EY STEM App has had so far and rolling the app out to more countries is an important step forward.”

For those interested in taking part, the rewards on offer are broken down into three categories, the first being ‘fun’ rewards for the participants in the form of digital vouchers for STEM-related products such as a tablet or smart watch. “Important” rewards offer opportunities for further development through mentoring sessions and work experience, while users can donate points with a matching EY contribution to selected social causes through ‘lasting” rewards.