Building Confidence in Students

20 October 2021 at 2.30-3.00pm

The recording of this inspiring discussion is now available on YouTube:

In this talk for the Ada Scotland Festival, Melissa Di Donato Roos, the Co-Founder and CEO of Inner Wings speaks with Stuart MacDonald, the Founder and CEO of Smart STEMS to discuss the importance of empowering girls to reach for their goals and find the confidence to pursue careers in STEM.

There is a clear correlation between the lack of women in STEM…

“Women make up only 24% of the STEM workforce in the UK”

…and the lack of confidence we are witnessing in young girls…

“Between the ages of 8 and 14, girls’ confidence levels fall by 30 percent.”

Melissa and Stuart are both passionate about working towards a future where the gender gaps in both confidence and STEM are redressed, and every child, regardless of gender, feels empowered to reach for their goals.

Building Confidence in Girls

About Melissa
Melissa Di Donato Roos is an acclaimed American-born British business and technology leader and the first female CEO of SUSE, the world’s largest open source software company. Throughout her 25+ year career, she has worked passionately to make the world of technology a better place for everyone, but in particular a place women want to be part of. Named one of the Top 10 most influential women in U.K. Technology, she also serves as Technology Group Chair of the 30% Club – an organisation with the goal of achieving 30 percent female directors on S&P 100 boards by 2023.

About Inner Wings

Inner Wings is a Confidence-Building Foundation, co-founded by Melissa Di Donato Roos and Darren Roos. Inner Wings’ mission is to build confidence, courage and bravery in young children, specifically girls, by providing them with a confidence- building toolkit. Inner Wings wants the next generation of women to believe that anything is possible and have the confidence to follow their dreams.

See their website here.

About Stuart
Stuart MacDonald is the Managing Director of Seric Systems and Founder and CEO of SmartSTEMs. Stuart is passionate about young people, their education and the need to bring equity to the opportunities they are afforded. Stuart believes that by making it easy for people to do good, more people implicitly will do good: SmartSTEMs is about removing the barriers to entry, and the collaborative framework approach we take achieves just that.

About SmartSTEMs
SmartSTEMs provides equal access to inspire and realise the full potential of future generations, facilitate cost effective collaboration with industry and education to develop the next generation of talent and create and maintain inclusive and open partnerships to deliver social value and opportunity. SmartSTEMs provides equity of opportunity to young people into STEM, with particular focus on the gender gap.
See their website here: