Bringing Science, Technology, Engineering and Math to life
How do you convince middle and high school students that careers in Science, Engineering, Technology and Math are cool? By providing a site harnessing the power of video, with YouTube-like presentation and hosts that can be related to, leading the students through the content and how jobs like these are achievable.
Junior Achievement of Northern Indiana’s volunteer-delivered, kindergarten-12th grade programs foster work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills, and use experiential learning to inspire students in their community to dream big and reach their potential.
Partnering with Eli Lilly, the STEM programme is used to primarily inform students of careers that Lilly have available with Science, Technology, Engineering and Math backgrounds.
With the world still limited by the Global pandemic, Junior Achievement still needed a way to facilitate one of its key programmes for the year.
Both Junior Achievement and Lilly wanted a way to engage the children without just providing another website. They needed something that would resonate and make a lasting impression, while still being accessible.
Capturing the imagination of a wide range of school children in curricular areas that might not be as popular as others is no mean feat, so we opted to bring a familiar feel to the presentation of the content by recruiting age-appropriate actors as hosts. We combined this with using bright colours and backdrops to give the feel of a mixture of Disney Kids Club and a music video.
To bring our video concept to life, the project included scriptwriting, storyboarding and video production. Filming was shot in a studio with 15 foot LED walls that played carefully curated content, relevant to the 4 career paths (including ‘did you know’ snippets that were displayed should the user become inactive). This meant conceptually we were able to create an engaging journey through the whole experience.
The video backdrop was not the only area we wanted to be visually stimulating. We intertwined the content with smooth page transitions and other micro interactions that enhanced the experience against the video backdrop, so every click and page discovered was a pleasure to use.
There were many things to consider during the build from low-spec school devices the site would be used on, to catering for hearing-impaired users. As the site was video-based, we applied closed captions and concentrated on high contrasting colours that reflected each content category.
Even though this project was not our first with Junior Achievement, there’s always something new to be learned and we ensured the onboarding element captured career affinity so that should there not be content available for a role the student was interested in as a future career, Junior Achievement had the data to work on providing an expanded offering for the next event. The high concurrent user count from multiple schools within Indiana who log on to interact with the content over a three day period was handled smoothly leaving both the clients and users happy with a seamless and intuitive virtual event experience.
Executive Vice President of Strategy and Programs