Specialisterne NI STEMLabs- a new summer programme for autistic young people

In partnership with Bring IT On, Kainos and Danske Bank, Specialisterne NI is inviting autistic young people (age 11-18) to take part in STEMLabs – a new summer programme for autistic young people.

STEMLabs will bring together autistic young people to have fun together, enjoy building and programming Lego Mindstorms Robots and take part in board games and fun activities, so that participants get more ready for careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics).

What will ‘STEMLabs’ involve?

STEMLabs will involve taking part in:

Lego Mindstorms Robot Activities where participants build and programme Lego Mindstorms Robots in small teams. Participants have the opportunity to work in small teams of 2-3 young people, and to discover strengths related to working in a team.

Social Communication Workshops where participants learn about social communication in STEM roles, and strategies of autistic people to succeed and develop rewarding careers in STEM.

Meet the Employer Activities Leading employers Danske Bank and Kainos are sponsoring STEMLabs and are taking part as well. You will have opportunity to ask what it is like to work in IT and STEM roles and to take part in interactive activities with Danske Bank and Kainos teams.

Autistic Mentors STEMLabs Summer scheme will have autistic mentors supporting participants.

At the end of the program, participants receive a STEMLabs Profile which will outline each participants’ strengths and specialist qualities based on observations throughout the STEMLabs workshops.

STEMLabs workshops are informed by Autism theory, the daily lived experience of young people and adults on the Autistic Spectrum in N Ireland, and the skills STEM employers tell us they are looking for in new employees.

Who is Specialisterne NI?

Specialisterne NI, a not-for-profit social enterprise, is part of the international Specialisterne network that has worked in 15 countries, for 15 years to support young people and adults on the Autistic Spectrum to prepare for, secure, and thrive in rewarding careers. The Specialisterne NI team have studied Autism or related subjects to Masters level. We have worked with over 400 young people and adults on the Autistic Spectrum in N Ireland, supporting individuals to better recognise their own strengths and abilities, and supporting employers, colleges, universities and organisations to better understand how to develop the skills of people on the Autistic Spectrum.

Specialisterne NI has delivered workshops for pupils across 10 secondary, grammar and integrated schools. The most common word in young people’s feedback has been ‘fun’! Young people’s feedback has also included

‘I enjoyed meeting new people and communicating with other people with Autism’

‘I liked it very much, I had a great time’


‘It was fun to do and interesting to hear the different perspectives on various topics brought up’

‘It was surprisingly fun’

‘I found it useful for socialising’

‘I really enjoyed it’

‘I felt at ease working in a team with people from different schools’

‘I found being interactive with new personalities and people to be a rich and fun experience’

‘being able to relate to others on the autism spectrum and just have the chance to have fun’

Who should attend?

STEMLabs  is a programme for pupils aged 11-18  who identify with being on the Autistic Spectrum (a diagnosis or statement is not required). We welcome all enquiries about attending STEMLabs. There are 15 free places available.

When and where is STEMLabs?

STEMLabs is taking place 12-16 August 2019 at the Specialisterne NI offices at Skainos, 239 Newtownards Road, Belfast, BT4 1AF

Should you be interested in participating in STEMLabs, or to find out more please contact Sharon Didrichsen, Manager, Specialisterne NI
Email: sharond@specialisterne.com
Mob: 07565 936191
The Specialisterne NI team will be available to meet with young people and parents to answer any questions regarding STEMLabs.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Specialisterne NI is a not-for-profit social enterprise that works to support people on the Autistic Spectrum to prepare for, secure, and thrive in rewarding careers.

The ‘STEMLabs’ programme is sponsored by Bring IT On, and leading STEM employers Danske Bank and Kainos. There is no cost to young people to participate in STEMLabs.

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