Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) are the type of sought after majors that many college students pursue when considering a career in biotechnology. But how, exactly, do those majors translate into jobs after college? Roche wants to help high school biotechnology students discover what those possibilities might be through hosting their signature event each spring - Roche STEM Careers Day. This year, virtually, the event reached over 900 students at six high schools across three states!
What exactly is STEM Careers Day?
The event began in the 2019/2020 school year as an in-person event inviting local high school biotech students onto our campuses for a full day of lab visits, STEM workshops/presentations, career mentoring, lunch with Roche colleagues and even a tour on their traveling product Navigator bus. Due to Covid-19, it all came to a halt in March of 2020, with the company postponing the remaining events to protect the health and safety of students, school staff and Roche volunteers.
With strict Covid-19 protocols still in place at the start of the 2020/2021 school year, Roche reimagined the event into a virtual model, with the unexpected benefit of an extended reach. “Despite not being able to meet in-person, we persevered with the goal of inspiring local high school biotech students to examine their science, technology, engineering and math-related careers goals with clarity. The ultimate goal of these interactions is to inspire the next generation of biotechnology professionals, who’ll be faced with tackling future health challenges,” shared Darlene Kryza, Community Engagement Lead, Roche Diagnostics. “We were able to invite schools local to our California, Arizona and New Jersey sites this school year, with 53 volunteers responsible for 33 individual engagements.”