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The STEMMY Conversations Podcast was created and is hosted by a vibrant and dynamic trio of young professional STEM enthusiasts.
STEMMY Conversations, with its tagline ‘STEM and Me, Let’s Talk!’ is an audiovisual podcast and safe space to talk about all things Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and Information, Communication, and Technology (ICT)!
STEMMY Conversations was founded by Bradley Downer, Kenita Roberts, and Stephanie Simon with guidance and support from Abeena Gomes and the late Patricia McAlmon.
This initiative is the brainchild of 25-year-old Bradley Downer, a STEM advocate and public health inspector hailing from Region Five. Downer has been volunteering with STEMGuyana and other tech-savvy NGOs since 2018.
In an interview with this publication, Downer noted that after his involvement with STEMGuyana, he was invited to speak with students of his alma mater Hopetown Primary. For the presentation he researched about various careers and was shocked about the plethora of careers he found.
He added, “While researching, I saw a ton of strange careers: bioinformatics scientist, geneticist, volcanologist, astrophysicist, etc. I never knew such careers existed. I became curious and I continued researching. However, I wanted to share that information with other youths and I believe creating this podcast was the best way to share that information. As I believe that these are careers of the present and future, as our world is changing rapidly.”
The goal of their podcast is to expose its listeners to careers within STEM and ICT as they are integral fields in our world today and the future. The main audience of the podcast is school-aged children and young adults.
“We believe that the expertise of our guests’ can inspire our audience in pursuing a career within the field of STEM & ICT.
This is done by asking various questions, such as: – What career did you pursue and a description of the said career. – How is your career integrated in STEM or ICT? What are some of the requirements to pursue such a career? How has your career journey been? What advice would you give to young adults who wish to pursue the said career? amongst other questions,” added Downer.
Currently, the trio hosts their sessions online, via the zoom platform.
These sessions are recorded, edited, and uploaded to various social media platforms. 1 episode is posted per month.
The podcast was officially launched on January 19th, 2022.
“STEMMY Conversations started as an idea I had. I recalled pitching the idea to a few friends and family members who said yes, go for it. I pondered about the idea. Would it make sense? Is it relevant?” said Downer via a Facebook post.
He continued by saying, “However, as time went by, I saw a need for it. My late mom encouraged me to go for it. I even shared it with Mrs. Abrams, (STEMGuyana’s Executive Director) and she endorsed the sentiments of my friends and family members. Further I pitched it to two of my friends, Kenita Roberts and Stephanie Simon, and they joined in, making them co-founders and co-hosts of the podcast.“
On the podcast’s social media page, they also share various programs and opportunities that your children and youth can join or participate in.
Their guests will include local folks such as Kendra Warner, Joylyn A Conway, Carl Handy, Jason Jacob, Abeena Gomes, amongst others.
They also interviewed Caribbean folks such as; Dr. Camir Ricketts, PhD (a bioinformatics scientist hailing from Jamaica), Teressa Alexander, Ciaran Phillip, Xavier Moonan, Michal Camejo, Mischa Christie and others.
The trio went as far as finding international guests. Their first episode featured Science Communicator Dr. Stephanie Castillo, Ph.D. and their eighth episode featured TedX speaker and Machessutes Institute of Technology (MIT) Alumni Ryan Robinson.
It is in their vision to release 2 episodes per month.
“On October 20th 2022, we closed Season 1 for the podcast. That episode featured Mr. Carl Handy, prominent software engineer from Guyana, while Season 2 will begin on Wednesday December 11th, 2023, featuring Ciaran Phillip, a forensic scientist from St. Kitts and Nevis,” Downer told this publication.
Bradley stated that the podcast is new and needs development. He also added that the challenge he faces is funding for his podcast as well as finding local STEM/ICT folks to interview.
The young tech enthusiast mentioned that most of his guests were found through networking at various STEM conferences and events. He also hopes that after every episode someone takes away something that they can apply to their lives.
There are currently eleven episodes of the podcast which can be found on their YouTube channel “STEMMY Conversations Podcast”, on Apple Podcast, Anchor FM, Spotify, Digicel’s GoLoud and Google Podcast.
You can also keep up to date by following them on all social media platforms @stemmy.conversations and their website https://sites.google.com/view/stemmy-conversations-podcast/home.