IAW17, the first edition of IAW, took place on the 3rd of February 2018 at the Institute and Observatory of Geophysics Antananarivo, themed on “building science skills through volunteering”. The initial date for the workshop was set for November 11th, 2017 but due to a plague outbreak affecting the country, the event had to be postponed.
The main objectives of the workshop were to show effective strategies in communicating science, to emphasize the benefits of volunteering, to build a network of young students in STEM, as well as to recruit new members.
The IAW17 call for application attracted 66 students and researchers not only from STEM disciplines but also from linguistic, economics and business departments. Due to limited resources, 38 applicants were selected in which 29 female and 9 male. A blind selection was conducted by members in South Africa, based on the quality of the application. In total, 29 out of the 37 selected attended the workshop. This was somehow expected due to the rescheduling of the workshop despite the existence of a waiting list.
Overall, IAW17 was a success, bringing together a wide range of students and researchers from different academic disciplines. Participants were very inspired and were able to build their own networks within the community. Apart from the participants, a journalist working with local newspapers, attended the event as a guest. The week after the event, IAW17 and Ikala STEM appeared in “Ao Raha” and “Express de Madagascar” newspapers.
More photos are available on our facebook page.