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Diocese of Toowoomba Catholic Schools

Youth Entrepreneurs and STEAM (YES) Conference at capacity

YES Conference logo

What:    Youth Entrepreneurs and STEAM (YES) Conference

Where:  St Mary’s College, 129 West Street, Toowoomba

              Opening address and keynote presentations in the Edmund Rice Cultural Centre

When:    Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Over 500 students. Teachers and STEAM experts will gather for the Youth Entrepreneurs and STEAM (YES) Conference on Wednesday, 2 June to share, network and connect with inspiring industry role models, innovators and universities for a day of interactive STEAM workshops. 

The intent of the YES Conference is to inspire students and teachers to experience the cutting edge of the latest innovations in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths and to support them to co-design and co-lead learning in their schools. 

With the demand for STEAM talent higher than ever, Catholic schools are finding new and innovative ways to prepare the next generation of engineers, techs, machine learning experts and those jobs which don’t currently exist.  This conference provides opportunities for students to engage with and excel at STEAM related knowledge and skills.

The YES Conference creator is Dr Adrian Bertolini from Intuyu Consulting.  As an engineer, scientist and social justice advocate Adrian is passionate about developing young people to make a difference to the world. The inaugural STEAM conference was held in 2017 in Melbourne with 170 students and teachers in attendance.  Since then the Conferences have been held all over Australia including Toowoomba, the first regional city to host a STEAM conference.

The YES conference is the second sponsored by Toowoomba Catholic Schools. The first being the It Takes a Spark Conference for girls in 2019 at St Saviour’s College.

Students and teachers from Catholic, State and Independent schools from as far west as Roma will attend as delegates and/or presenters. 

“The world is changing at such a pace, that the focus on skills to be able to enter a rapidly changing world, steeped in technology and scientific advancement, is more important than ever before. We are delighted that students and teachers in Toowoomba and surrounding towns have the opportunity to attend such an innovative event,” said Dr Pat Coughlan, Executive Director: Catholic Schools.

Keynote speakers include Professor Jonti Horner from the Centre for Astrophysics at the University of Southern Queensland and Dr Derek Long from the Centre for Agricultural Engineering, also at USQ.  Professor Horner is an astronomer and astrobiologist whose research interests include the search for planets orbiting other stars, the formation and evolution of our Solar system and the factors that come together to make a given planet (like the Earth) suitable for the development and survival of life.  Dr Long is at the forefront of how drones, robotics, smartphones, and machine vision can be used to monitor and improve agriculture such as the cotton, grains, and livestock industries. Dr Long also enjoys introducing machine vision to school students and has been running hands-on machine vision workshops for schools in the Toowoomba area since 2016.


Toowoomba Mayor, Paul Antonio will open the conference.


For further information or to arrange to attend this event please contact:

Donna Kerr | Communications Officer | 4637 1408 | 0428 793 718 | donna.kerr@twb.catholic.edu.au