Why did you enter the Wales STEM Awards?
Clean air isn’t a topic that get a lot of attention, but air pollution is the leading environmental cause of early deaths worldwide, and the UK continues to have illegal levels of pollution. This is how Think Air came about.
Our innovative technology is helping business across Wales and the UK to become more climate conscious by giving them the tools, data, insights, strategies, and purification systems they need to reduce air pollution and better air quality for their organisations and their communities.
But we knew that being nominated for – and ultimately winning – a Wales STEM award would open up even more conversations to allow us to make even more of a positive impact.
What did winning mean for you or your business?
Winning the award for STEM Start-Up of the Year wasn’t just a lovely accolade to shout about, it’s helping us to elevate our profile so we can reach more people, continue to drive even more positive change, and fulfil our pledge for cleaner air and greener, more sustainable practices for our communities here in Wales.
This award isn’t just for us – it’s about showcasing to Wales – and beyond – the brilliant businesses who are investing in our technology to be at the forefront of greener, cleaner practices that are enhancing health, wellbeing, and the environment.
What did you think of the awards ceremony?
We can’t speak highly enough about the ceremony. From start to finish – it was one of the most organised, immersive, and inspiring events we’ve attended. We were honoured to be in a room filled with Wales’ STEM leaders – some of whom we already collaborate with – and being named a winner and a highly commended business made it even more memorable for us as a business.
What’s been a challenge for you or your business during the last year and how did you overcome it?
One of the biggest challenges for us has been proving to schools and teachers how easy STEM learning can be. When we first launched TASK, some teachers in our pilot were hesitant to use the kit as it seemed daunting. But, by simplifying everything – from modules and its ease of use to how we demonstrated and communicated its benefits – we’ve been able to grow our schools presence across Wales and into England as of the first quarter of 2023.
What’s been a highlight for you or your business over the last year and why?
A huge highlight for us has been the recognition and media attention Think Air has achieved in the last 12 months.
We’re now a multi-award-winning business whose been invited to present at the House of Lords and is now collaborating with some of the UK’s biggest names to drive STEM and environmentally-focused CSR initiatives – engaging local communities and the next generation of scientists and engineers. And winning a Wales STEM award has helped us achieve this by boosting our profile and connecting us with even more likeminded businesses and collaborators.
What, in your opinion, can be done to inspire more young people to pursue careers in STEM?
We really believe that education, visibility, and accessibility is key to inspiring the next generation of STEM talent.
TASK (Think Air School Kit) is rolling out at schools across Wales and the West to arm the next generation with the skills and knowledge they need to drive sustainable, climate-conscious decisions. It’s been such a hit that it’s also been adopted by several CSR initiatives (including Kier, Euroclad, the Cardiff Devils, and CK Foodstores) to engage the next generation, spark an interest in STEM subjects and career paths, and improve local communities too.
What, or who, is exciting you in the STEM sector in Wales?
The increased attention. STEM has been a sector that – in Wales – has often been overlooked. But, with so much innovation and opportunities emerging year on year, it’s exciting to see how this is changing. We have a thriving STEM landscape that’s finally commanding attention – and we’re proud to be a part of it.
What do you think could be done to help the STEM sector in Wales?
As we mentioned above, continuing to shine the light on the innovations, opportunities, and talent that are coming out of Wales. But by engaging – and inspiring – the next generation of STEM talent too. It’s something we’re committed too through TASK (Think Air School Kit), and as this gains momentum, we hope others join us in our pledge to encourage pupils to pursue careers in STEM too.