From Future Tools, nose flutes and hacker spirit - On September 18, 2020, the MINT:Barcamp of the Körber Foundation took place for the 6th time. In contrast to the five previous MINT:Barcamps, this time in digital form due to the corona. More than 150 participants discussed in 16 sessions - so more MINT networkers took part in this year's MINT:Barcamp than ever before.
"Sustainably networked" even in times of Corona
"Come in - this is the plenary session" - these were the words that greeted the Barcamp participants on the morning of September 18, 2020 on the central MINT:Barcamp website. This year, the plenum did not gather in the rooms of the Körber Forum at Kehrwieder 12 in Hamburg, as is usually the case. Due to the corona pandemic, MINT actors from all over Germany came together in the digital space this time. The MINT:Barcamp gives MINT networkers the opportunity to exchange experiences in MINT education, to share their own knowledge, to network and to learn from other MINT actors.
Under the motto "Sustainably networked", the participants discussed various questions: How is STEM education structured in times of Corona? What challenges are the MINT regions facing and what good practice examples can be shared? How can STEM education be combined with environmental education and education for sustainable development? And how can MINT (training) education take place in the digital space under the current circumstances? What tools are there?
The 16 sessions made it clear that the STEM networkers are primarily concerned with one thing when it comes to the buzzword “sustainably networked”: to bring first-class educational offers to the students even in times of Corona. Eight of the sixteen sessions were dedicated to the topic of MINT education in the digital space and there was a lively exchange about virtual coaching, learning via YouTube or digital future tools. The well-attended session "MINT education on social media" showed that, despite the lively interest in digital tools, half of the participating MINT actors are not on social media with their educational offerings.
In the session was a interactive STEM format presented and then the session organizers discussed together with interested parties, social media active and critical voices. The conclusion: much too short, the session!
zdi actors share their experiences with virtual STEM education
Many zdi actors also took part in the MINT:Barcamp of the Körber Foundation. Together with Dr. Peter Klauth from the Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences, Chrissoula Tolidou from the zdi center KReMINTec led two sessions on the subject of "Online courses in times of Corona", which were well attended. Thanks to reliable structures, creative ideas and a good pinch of courage and drive, the zdi networks were able to set up concepts for online courses shortly after the schools were closed in March. The zdi coordinators know how important mutual exchange is and are happy to pass on their knowledge to other MINT actors.
"The MINT:Barcamp of the Körber Foundation showed how important it is for the MINT community to exchange ideas with like-minded people, especially in times of crisis," summarizes Magdalena Hein from the zdi regional office. "Last Friday, exciting ideas were further developed, supra-regional cooperation initiated and new impetus given to MINT work. We are happy about this open exchange of MINT actors nationwide!"
The participants of the MINT:Barcamp were enthusiastic about the digital event format and praised the technical implementation and that there were lively discussions and networking despite the physical distance. In order to get to know each other and to find out who else is at the MINT:Barcamp, a digital pinboard was set up using Padlet. This gave the participants the opportunity to introduce themselves and leave their contact details for the other participants. In this way, it was also ensured in the digital space that the MINT actors from all over Germany can network with each other in the long term. Sigrun Bones and Dr. Stefanie Kowitz-Harms from the Körber Foundation, who gallantly led the day through the Barcamp together, were no less enthusiastic and were particularly pleased about the many unknown faces: "It's great that so many new faces were there and that we new STEM networkers have reached. Technically everything went well! Now we all stay connected sustainably - that's the plan!"
the seventh MINT: Barcamp will take place on September 17, 2021 in Hamburg!
Further information on the MINT regions can be found on the Pages of the Körber Foundation.
Would you like more bar camp? STEM enthusiasts and zdi actors also come together in NRW every year. Here you can find all information about the last zdi-BarCamp.