Meet some of BCE’s leading scientists and budding scientists


​​Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) schools are full of budding female scientists and leading science teachers.  

This International Day of Women and Girls in Science (Saturday 11 February), we’re asking these aspiring and inspiring BCE community members why they love science.  

With a passion for artificial intelligence, an affinity for robots, and dreaming about drones, our female students and educators spill the beans! 

Year 12 student Isabella McLeod - St Teresa’s College Noosaville 

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With aspirations to become a doctor, Year 12 student Isabella McLeod says she believes “all women have the capability to pursue a career in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).” 

I’ve met many female doctors in excursions to hospitals, they’re incredible,” she says. 
“In my interactions, all these wom​en are so driven and collected, and very passionate about their interests. 
“They inspire me to work harder to achieve my goal of pursuing a career in medicine. 
“I would love to help oth​​ers by working as a paediatric cardiac surgeon.” 
With a series of science awards under her belt, and in her final year of her secondary education, Isabella was recently accepted into a bioengineering program at the University of Queensland, which saw her win a trophy for ‘best pitch’ for her argument that ‘genetically modified products are harmful.’ 
We can’t wait to see what the future holds for Isabella and wish her every success in her Year 12 studies and beyond. 

Fiona Greenway - St Teresa’s Catholic College Noosaville 

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Geophysics and mining and oil exploration in Kazakhstan, Germany, and Oman – what an interesting early career Noosaville teacher Fiona Greenway describes.  

The secondary maths and science teacher at St Teresa’s Catholic College is now not only an international leader in science, but she is also an education leader.  

Fiona says she was inspired to become a science teacher after studying at a postgraduate level. 

“I find teaching science so rewarding as I love supporting the curiosity of my students,” she says. 
“It’s fascinating to see human knowledge evolve. 
“I love science because as a science teacher you can be at the cutting edge of new discoveries and understanding.” 
Fiona added that she reminds her female students that “they can do anything.” 
“Young women may have misconceptions about what they are capable of achieving, and it’s good for them to see that there really are no limits in this day and age,” she says. 
“It’s my mission to make STEM visible to young girls and women, creating a positive environment that encourages them to believe that they can reach for the stars.” 
Thank you Fiona for being an inspiration to your students at St Teresa’s Catholic College and for young women everywhere who dream of an exciting career in the field of science. 

Year 2 student Georgia Dabelstein – Our Lady of Dolours School Mitchelton 


One of our youngest budding scientists, Year 2 student, Georgia Dabelstein tells everyone “I love science!” 

After receiving a microscope for her recent birthday, the Our Lady of Dolours School Mitchelton student’s passion for science has grown exponentially. 

Her teachers share that Georgia is often seen researching different science topics and even develops a hypothesis to test her theories. 

Georgia says her favourite show is educational streaming television series Emily’s Wonder Lab, currently featuring on Netflix, and says her favourite science experience includes a big slime pool, and an experiment with baking soda and vinegar. 

In the future, Georgia says she wants to learn more about “chemistry, environmental science, nature and the world.” 

With the world at her feet and all her years ahead of her to use her enquiring mind for the pursuit of science, we know Georgia is a student to watch! 

Katherine Cole – Our Lady of Dolours School Mitchelton  

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With a passion for biology, Year 5 Teacher Katherine Cole has made it her mission to build enthusiasm and love of the earth among her students. 

When speaking about responding to Pope Francis’ call to Care for Our Common Home, Katherine said the study of science is the perfect way to get students interested in their environment. 

“Teaching my students how we can look after our beautiful world for future generations is my mission as an educator,” she says. 

“I am inspired to build a love of science, showing my students how to be curious, and understand how and why they do what they do. 

“By understanding, we can build enthusiasm and a love of our earth.” 

When speaking about International Day of Women and Girls in Science, Katherine says “girls and women are our silent movers and shakers of our world.” 

“Girls can gently influence everything with their passion and love of learning,” she says. 

“If we can build a love of science in our female students, they will change our world for the better.” 

With educators like Katherine guiding our budding scientists, we have every faith the world will be left a better place by the students of Our Lady of Dolours School. 

Year 12 student Niamh Rudledge - St Teresa’s College Noosaville 

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After being inspired by her science teachers, Year 12 student Niamh Rudledge has decided to make it her career.  

Niamh says she has a huge interest in psychological science, nurtured by her science teachers at St Teresa’s College Noosaville. 

“Both my teachers have inspired me to pursue university study after school,” she says. 

“I now know I want to be a criminal profiler.” 

When speaking about her love for science, Niamh says she loves “learning how the brain works.” 

I find it fascinating the reasoning behind different people’s actions, as well as the effects of different brain injuries and mental illnesses. 

“I would encourage other girls to pursue careers in science because it’s very rewarding when you discover new things.”  

We are proud to hear just how inspiring Niamh’s teachers have been when it comes to her chosen field of study, and we wish her a very successful future in her chosen pathway. 

Alannah Strong – St Finbarr’s Primary School Ashgrove and St Ambrose’s Primary School Newmarket 



As the science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) teacher for two Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) primary schools, Alannah Strong's week is quite the busy one.

She spends her time skyrocketing between St Finbarr's Primary School Ashgrove and St Ambrose's Primary School Newmarket.

Alannah says she re​alised her true passion was teaching STEAM after starting her early career in fashion, design, and media, before working for 10 years as a primary school teacher.

“Science lessons were always a highlight in my classroom as I would see the student's faces light up with passion and curiosity," she says.

“I love teaching science and hearing the squeal of excitement from students when conducting experiments.

“In STEAM I get to combine my passions and interests with the students' and learn alongside them."

When speaking about being a woman working in science, Alannah is passionate. 

“Expanding participation for women and girls in technology and science can bring new and fresh perspectives to the field, and ensure diversity in research, and other specialised projects," she added.

“Closing the gender gap and changing the image of what a scientist, coder, engineer or programmer looks like allows girls to see themselves as the change makers, problem solvers, and leaders of the future.

“International Day of Women and Girls in Science is important as it puts a spotlight and focus on achieving gender equality in Science and STEM.

“Women in STEM bring unique essential knowledge, skillsets, and ideas to the field and we are beginning to see a shift with companies looking for these fresh and diverse perspectives.

“It is important to have a day to honour and celebrate the women who are the change makers, rule breakers, and icons of the STEM field."​

We couldn't agree more Alannah and thank you for your commitment to your young students at St Finbarr's Primary School Ashgrove and St Ambrose's Primary School Newmarket.

Samantha Eddy – St Joachim's Catholic Primary School Holland Park

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Samantha Eddy says her female students hold the key to ending some of the world's largest issues.

In fact, the Digital and Design Technology Teacher at St Joachim's Catholic Primary School Holland Park is confident some of her students will go on to change the world.

“Most of our lessons are inquiry-based, bringing in elements of science, engineering and maths," Samantha explains.

“I love teaching science because it's such an amazing area of growth and change, and I find it exciting to be part of.

“The innovators in the industry are such amazing people who show such resilience and passion for their work.

“Most of all though, it is my female students who come through the doors everyday who inspire me.

“They are the ones who are always looking for ways to make a difference in our world, and careers in STEM are the answer to issues around sustainability, poverty, hunger, and healthcare."

When speaking about the future, Samantha says she is preparing her students for careers which may not even exist yet.

“Science is the future, so it's important my students develop the skills to be curious and inquisitive learners," she says.

“As an educator, it is a privilege to be a small part of my students' journey."​

Thank you Samantha for believing in all the wonderful possibilities ahead for your students and the world they will lead in their adulthood.

Kaylene Solomon – San Sisto College Carina

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Kaylene Solomon has made it her mission to encourage more young women to explore careers in science.

“I'd love to know that I am helping to bridge the gap in this profession, by inspiring the next generation of women," says the STEM Teacher for San Sisto College Carina.

When speaking about the successes she counts throughout her career as an educator, Kaylene says, “I consider my greatest professional achievements to be the progression of any of my students to careers in STEM."

“I want my students to have curiosity about the world around them," she says.

“The opportunities for female students to 'wonder' at San Sisto College are part of the reason why I enjoy teaching here so much."

Kaylene added that the International Day of Women and Girls in Science is “important because it allows her students to converse and question role models within STEM industries."

We hope more young women choose careers in STEM after being guided by dedicated educators like Kaylene.​

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