26 September 2023

Police hunt next generation of scientists

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ACT high school students are to get an inside look at the Australian Federal Police’s (AFP) specialist forensic facility in Canberra through a work experience program.

Announcing its 2023 Forensic Work Experience (WEX) program, AFP said the program was open to high school students in Years 10-12 who wanted to pursue a career in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

Acting Coordinator of Capability and Enabling in charge of the WEX program, Brett Scott said the program was designed to give high school students an understanding of what a career in forensics involved, and the opportunity to engage with AFP members working in contemporary forensic roles.

“We hope to nurture their interest and help develop it into a lifelong career,” Mr Scott said.

“Many current forensic specialists can pinpoint a specific moment, or their love of a particular television show, as the moment they decided that a career in forensic science was for them,” he said.

“Run at the AFP’s Forensics Facility in Canberra, participants will hone their skills in practical workshops including biology, fingerprints and crime scenes.”

Mr Scott said that at the end of the week-long program, participants would be put through their paces in mock court room trials.

In addition to the WEX program, he said the AFP forensic scientists ran a series of one-day virtual seminars, A sneak peek into AFP Forensics, which were open to all WEX eligible applicants.

“From fingerprint and facial identification to firearms identification and armoury, the seminars are designed to give students a teaser into what a career in forensic science looks like and hear from current AFP forensic scientists,” Mr Scott said.

“They hoped to encourage the future generation of forensic scientists and see that a career in STEM can be a fun, fulfilling and rewarding way of serving our communities,” he said.

“It is incredibly rewarding to see our participants take their passion for forensic science to the next level, to work amongst like-minded peers and learn that this career is a very real possibility.”

Further information on the WEX program and seminars can be accessed at this PS News link.

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