The Innovators’ Tea Party Inc. is a Perth-based not-for-profit organisation which aims to inspire and empower more young women to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). We link successful female scientists, engineers and innovators with high-school students in order to promote STEM-focussed careers. Our mentors come from a range of backgrounds and work in a variety of industries, and all of them are passionate about promoting their field to future innovators.
Our speed-networking events are free and open to all students in years 10-12 and give attendees the opportunity to speak to each female mentor for a short period of time before moving on to the next. In this way, the students get to meet a number of role models specialising in a range of STEM fields. We encourage attendees to bring a friend and talk to the mentors together.
The inaugural Innovators’ Tea Party was held at the John Leckie Pavilion in Nedlands, WA in September 2016 – we had 100 girls from 19 different Perth schools attend. This year, we expanded the event to a full weekend in National Science Week (August 19th & 20th) at FLUX by Spacecubed, in the Perth CBD. We had 225 student registrations from 45 different WA schools and 130 professionals working in STEM fields attend. What a great result!
Evelyn Chuk – President & Mining Engineer (Rio Tinto)
Evelyn has always maintained a strong passion for science, completing degrees in both Astrophysics and Engineering, before working as a fly-in-fly-out mining engineer in the West Australian Pilbara. Evelyn founded the Innovators’ Tea Party in 2016 after being inspired by her work and volunteer positions with young students across Western Australia. She is driven by her desire to promote the wonderful opportunities available to young women in STEM careers, and share her love of all things STEM. On the weeks when she is not mining iron ore in the Pilbara, Evelyn can often be found gazing at the night sky through a telescope, or sailing on the Swan River.
Sarah Henn – Secretary & Medical Research Scientist (UWA)
Sarah is a cancer research scientist, who has studied and worked in Australia and overseas. She is passionate about communicating science with people of all ages and cultures, and advocating the importance of research and discovery. Sarah loves her work as a medical research scientist, and hopes to see more women enter and stay in careers in STEM fields. Sarah believes in the importance of great mentors and hopes that The Innovators’ Tea Party can provide an opportunity for high-school girls to meet someone who inspires them to pursue their dreams. When she’s not in the lab, Sarah loves to be in the ocean, hiking, traveling or reading a great novel.
Tara Broadhurst – Treasurer & STEM Editor (Scitech)
Tara is a passionate science communicator who has spent many years inspiring the minds of younger generations around Western Australia and across the globe. She believes in exploring your world through curiosity and wonder, and having an understanding and appreciation of STEM is your key to that exploration. Tara manages the science news website Particle and spends her days liaising with researchers, scientists, government and journalists to accurately and engagingly share the STEM stories in our state. When she isn’t reading, Tara is at the beach, on the water rowing or playing with other people’s dogs.