Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers are related to the most advanced and productive sectors in the European Union job market. However, a small number of teenagers choose them. There is also a clear gender bias: only 10 out of 100 European women find STEM careers interesting. On the other hand, the number of boys has almost tripled.
In SEEDS we encourage teens to explore health issues that are important to them through citizen science. This way, they generate new knowledge while producing scientifically reliable results. This is very important because scientific publications that provide information for policy decisions usually do not take teenagers into account. That is because scientists tend to focus more on other age groups (like children and adults). In addition, unhealthy behaviours carried out as a teenager may have long-term effects on their health and well-being.
The approaches used in STEM activities increase motivation and self-confidence. Likewise, they decrease the risk of low morale (even drop-out) in secondary education.