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Aurecon inspires African girls to pursue STEM careers


STEM Ambassadors at Aurecon's Tshwane offices

17 September 2015 - The TaunganaAfrica STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Expo was held during 24-27 August in Gauteng – this year under the theme “Afrikan Geeks are Awesome!”

Engineering, management and specialist technical services company, Aurecon, was once again a host for this annual initiative, which aims to encourage high school girls from different African countries to explore careers in STEM industries such as engineering, aviation, mining, energy and entrepreneurship.

“Aurecon is honoured to be a part of this initiative. Giving the girls exposure to female role models in the engineering sector is a great opportunity to show how rewarding a career in our industry can be. The girls are bright, inquisitive and there will undoubtedly be some future leaders from this year’s group,” says Sonja Jansen van Rensburg, member of Aurecon’s RSA leadership team.

Aurecon hosted the group of thirty Grade 10 girls, called STEM Ambassadors, at the company’s Tshwane offices on 27 August. The girls were from South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The company used the opportunity to show how engineering solutions are developed, highlight innovative concepts that will be applied in the future, and inspire the girls with stories from female STEM role models.

“We took the girls on an open-top bus tour throughout Tshwane, showcasing notable projects that Aurecon was involved in such as Freedom Park on Salvokop Hill, the University of South Africa (UNISA), the Gautrain Rapid Rail Link, Loftus Versfeld, the University of Pretoria, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) campus, the upgrading of Simon Vermooten Road, and Menlyn Park Shopping Centre. Their final stop was at Aurecon’s Lynnwood Bridge offices.

“One of Aurecon’s diversity initiatives is to focus on empowering women. Members of our Quality, Environment & Sustainability, Water, Geotechnical and Operations teams gave the girls information about careers in the engineering industry,” says Jansen van Rensburg.

Aurecon has been collaborating with Taungana for a number of years and the company aims to be involved in future programmes that it offers.

“We thoroughly enjoyed hosting the girls and I hope to see many of them in STEM careers and possibly Aurecon’s own corridors in the future,” concludes Jansen van Rensburg.

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