Rangi Ruru Students at the University of Otago's "Brain Bee" in 2016 Rangi Ruru Students at the University of Otago's "Brain Bee" in 2016 CREDIT: Otago University

Former NASA / US Air Force Engineer To Speak at Rangi Ruru About Global Demand for STEM Skills

Thursday 26 October 2017, 6:24PM
By RedPR


On Monday 30 October, Rob Fuller, a former NASA and US Air Force engineer turned secondary school teacher, will take to the stage at Rangi Ruru’s Merivale Lane Theatre, to talk Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).

The event is called Your Future in STEM and will see Mr Fuller joined by Canterbury University student Evie Wallace who studied maths and the three sciences in high school, and is now a 3rd Professional Year chemical and process engineering student, to talk about STEM subjects – what opportunities they can provide career-wise.

Both Mr Fuller and Ms Wallace are speaking at the invitation of Crimson Education, an international education and career mentoring company that has been collaborating with Rangi Ruru since mid-2016. Rangi Ruru Principal, Dr Sandra Hastie, says Crimson offers an incredible number of opportunities to students.

“Whether it’s access to one of the top universities in the world, a university in New Zealand, options for a gap year or a polytechnic trade certificate, working with Crimson Education provides our students with every opportunity to take the career pathway they want to – with the best chance of success. Rangi Ruru is the front door to Crimson Education’s services, which are also available to students from other schools,” she says.

Dr Hastie adds that having the opportunity to hear from people like Rob Fuller and Evie Wallace is another advantage of the relationship with Crimson.

“What are the most sought-after STEM skills, which universities provide the best STEM education, and what can young people be doing - right now - to prepare themselves for jobs that may not even exist yet?  These are the sorts of questions we will hear the answers to,” she says.

Miss Wen Qiu is the Crimson Education career pathway advisor based at Rangi Ruru and she says developments in Silicon Valley, the global construction boom, and continued digital innovations are all pushing the demand for skills in STEM further into the spotlight.

“Rangi Ruru is very future focused and that includes providing opportunities for the students outside the usual local pathways,” says Miss Qiu. “What is happening globally right now with regards to STEM is extremely relevant to students choosing subjects for next year and beyond,” she says.

Your Future in STEM is tailored for students in Year 10-12, although interested students from all year levels as well as teachers and parents are welcome,” she says.


When: Monday 30 October 2017, 6 - 7:30pm

Where: Gibson Centre - Rangi Ruru Girls School, 59 Hewitts Rd, Merivale, Christchurch




Rob Fuller is an engineer with 20 years' experience working within such preeminent organisations as the US Air Force, NASA, and Ford Motor Company.

Since calling New Zealand home four years ago, Rob is transitioning into science and technology teaching at high school, with a goal of passing on his professional experience and passion for learning to the next generation of engineers, scientists, and technology professionals. He is currently completing his teacher education and will begin his new career as a secondary teacher in January.

Rob believes the most important key to being successful in any of the various STEM careers is to become a lifelong learner.  “Technology progresses and changes so fast that in some fields, what you learn today could be outdated in just a few years,” Rob says.

“The exponential advance in knowledge and technical developments is making working in these career fields exciting and important,” Rob adds.  “Technology now touches and impacts every aspect of life, and those who are able to help move this forward, develop and implement new technologies, and understand the languages of maths, science, and engineering will be the leaders and innovators of the future.”

Evie Wallace,  who was recognised with the Phil Gillon Memorial Scholarship earlier this year for her outstanding academic and personal achievements, says studying engineering is more than just “problem solving”.  From her experience, it is also about building relationships, sharing technical knowledge, and getting involved with things you are passionate about.

During her time at university, Evie has been involved with engineering mentoring, the Women in Engineering Society, and peer note-taking for the Disability Resource Service. She has also enjoyed a wide range of work experience - from operating a steel-welding robot in a factory, to working in a consulting firm. She will soon be travelling to India to work with students on a sustainability project as part of the New Zealand-India Sustainability Challenge.

Crimson Education is an education and career mentoring company with over 2000 expert tutors and mentors based at the most prestigious universities around the world. Our team supports students to gain access to the best-fit, top-ranked universities for them, with support across academic tutoring, standardised test prep, leadership and extracurricular advising and admissions consulting.

Rangi Ruru Girls’ School is one of New Zealand’s leading Year 7-13 independent schools, with a proud reputation as one of the country’s best performing schools. There’s a strong focus on a wide range of areas including sport, art, music, science, technology, theatre, engineering and languages. Rangi Ruru provides a safe, caring and nurturing environment that ensures that all girls are provided with the opportunity to break barriers, learn skills, discover courage and inspiration, have an impact, make friends, and become part of a legacy that will stay with them for life.