Students from University of the West of Scotland have been selected to take part in a Scotland-wide programme providing mentorship and inspiration for young women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).

The Dell STEM Aspire programme is exclusively for female undergraduate students studying towards a STEM-related degree at selected Scottish FE and HE institutions.

Tom Caira, Senior Lecturer in UWS’s School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences (CEPS), said: “The Dell STEM Aspire programme offers a bridge between higher education and industry, which is invaluable for our students.

“Gaining access to experienced mentors will give our students insight into the world of work, while expanding their own networks and knowledge.”


Now in its fourth year, and being run virtually for the first time, the programme sets out to provide support for female students looking to break into the tech sector – and overcome gender inequality that’s often seen in industry.

The group of 15 UWS students come from a wide range of degree programmes that encompass all three academic divisions in CEPS.

Through the programme, students are allocated an industry mentor, with whom they’ll meet once a month. There are also quarterly get-togethers for all students and mentors.


The industry mentors are recruited from within Dell and also from a number of high-profile organisations and graduate employers, giving participants the opportunity to broaden their networks and gain valuable insight and experience.

Mr Caira added: “Having been involved in the programme since its inception, we at UWS have seen the benefit of STEM Aspire first-hand – and look forward to seeing what this year’s cohort take from the experience.”

UWS has a long-standing relationship with tech firm Dell and has been directly involved in the STEM Aspire programme since its launch in academic session 2017-18.

Other academic institutions taking part this year include Glasgow Caledonian University, City of Glasgow College, University of Strathclyde, University of Glasgow and Edinburgh Napier University.