Media Release: Expanding STEM options for all Australian students

16 August 2017

The Office of the Chief Scientist, together with Engineers Australia, today hosted the launch of the STARportal, a searchable database of STEM activities.

You can read the media release below, or download it as a PDF.

Australian students have new options at their fingertips with the launch of a national searchable database of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) activities.

STARportal is the nation’s first dedicated platform connecting students, parents and teachers with STEM events in their local community, as well as online activities.

It is a completely free service for users and STEM event providers, with more than 330 activities already listed.

Industry, Innovation and Science Minister Senator Arthur Sinodinos AO today launched STARportal at Parliament House in Canberra, as part of National Science Week.

Students from Melrose High School in Canberra were on hand to demonstrate STARportal along with their science teacher Geoff McNamara, the 2014 Prime Minister’s Science Prize winner for excellence in secondary science teaching.

“Science doesn’t start and stop at the classroom door – it’s everywhere. But if families and teachers don’t know about these programs, our students miss out,” Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel said.

“STARportal aims to spark the curiosity of students and encourage deeper engagement with skills that are so vital to give humans a competitive edge in a technology-driven world.”

The Office of the Chief Scientist, working with Engineers Australia, developed STARportal with support from some of the nation’s biggest employers. The BHP Billiton Foundation, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Telstra are founding partners in the project, along with the Australian Mathematical Sciences Institute.

“STARportal is an example of successful collaboration between government and non-government organisations to the benefit of all Australian students,” said Engineers Australia CEO Peter McIntyre.

“The portal is a truly national resource for students of all ages that providers can update to showcase their latest STEM offerings.”

STARportal can be found at