Tina Woods is founder of ColliderSCIENCE. She is the mother of three teenage boys, and started out as a scientist herself but then went on to fuel her passions in more creative and entrepreneurial pursuits in the healthcare communications business.
Future Forum, ColliderSCIENCE's first project, was set up by Tina in 2014 working with Dr Richard Clark, Head of Science at Kings College School Wimbledon and with the support of Dr David Cameron, who heads up the Stimulating Physics Network at the Institute of Physics (IoP). The original idea for the project was inspired through the challenge of helping Tina's 14-year-old son with science volunteering opportunities at a time when he was wondering what he should do in future with GCSEs on the horizon. Too young at 14 for work placement and volunteering, David at the IoP suggested setting up a science club at the school. Richard at Kings was receptive and keen to experiment with something a little different....and, well, one thing led to another and....
Since then Future Forum has prospered with the contributions and energy of a wide range of collaborators in the sciences and arts, from quantum artists and thinkers to neuroscientists, creativity experts and leading physicists from CERN, all working together to inspire teenagers to think creatively and differently. The sheer enthusiasm and interest from everyone involved so far has shown there is a genuine appetite for re-imagining what science education should look like and how we can help our youth become better equipped to thrive in a fast changing world.
The ethos of ColliderSCIENCE is inspired by Ken Robinson's philosophy on creativity in schools, together with the latest thinking in human centered design (Tim Brown at IDEO leads the way here) and lean start-up methodologies in the digital revolution (pioneered by Eric Ries, for example).
Both creative and digital technologies are central to growth and prosperity in the future global economy. STEM industries are vital in the UK economy and are predicted to expand over the coming years, yet there is a growing STEM skills gap and a lack of high quality graduates (particularly among women and disadvantaged populations) in many STEM sectors at the moment which needs to be addressed.