DIALOG is thrilled to have partnered again with Visions of Science to speak with under-serviced and under-represented youth on creating social change in their communities through design.
On Tuesday, March 28, 2023, DIALOG’s Stephen Loveday, urban designer, and Emma Shaen, interior designer, had the opportunity to guest speak at STEM Academy, an after-school support program at Earnscliffe Senior Public School in Brampton, Ontario.
Stephen and Emma began the session with a brief presentation on their career journey. They spoke about their interests and hobbies when they were young, education, roles at DIALOG, how their work impacts community wellbeing and the environment, and all the challenges and successes they experienced along the way. To spark the students’ creativity and collaboration, Stephen and Emma dedicated time for an engaging activity that would allow the students to understand how designers practice in real life.
Students broke out into groups and were assigned to design a classroom in an outdoor space. Cutouts of desks, chairs, light fixtures, plants, and trees were provided to allow students to design the layout of the space however they like. They also sketched additional features such as canopies, pathways, and wildlife, that would add more life to the envisioned classroom.
“We left the classroom inspired. It felt nice to think that we opened a door for the students to learn about different career opportunities and paths they can take in design and architecture,” says Stephen. “I also felt inspired and wish I had learning experiences like this that opened my eyes to different paths when I was young. It’s great that these students are learning about this and knowing that there is no perfect or right direction,” Emma adds.
DIALOGers Emma (left) and Stephen (right) with students at Visions of Science’s STEM Academy program.
Thank you to Visions of Science and the student participants for bringing great energy to the discussion. A special thank you to DIALOGers Stephen Loveday and Emma Shaen for connecting and inspiring the youth to help build and improve the wellbeing of the community and the environment.
About Visions of Science
Visions of Science is a charitable organization that exists to advance the educational achievement and positive development of youth from low-income and marginalized communities through meaningful engagement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines through mentorship, accessibility, partnerships and developmental experiences.
The STEM Academy is an after-school support program that takes place at Earnscliffe Sr. Public School for youth participants from January to May. The program focuses on innovative STEM-based academic and development activities related to creating social change in the community.
Learn more about Visions of Science at vosnl.org.