The British Science Association (BSA) is thrilled to announce the return of the highly-anticipated ‘Smashing Stereotypes’ campaign for this year’s British Science Week – celebrating the diverse people and careers in science and engineering! 

In its fifth year, the Smashing Stereotypes campaign - running alongside British Science Week - celebrates trailblazers in science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM) sectors to share stories about their journeys and day-to-day work. 

This year’s campaign features stories from some remarkable people who challenge long-standing stereotypes about what it means to work in science. Our goal remains the same: we want to inspire young people from all backgrounds and show them that careers in STEM are open to all. 


A career in science is for everyone 

From cosmetic science to motorsport, STEM careers are truly diverse. There are countless rewarding science-related careers to choose from. We want to champion science for everyone: whatever your interests, background, or career path. 

We are proud to announce our partnerships this year with the cosmetics giant L’Oréal, as well as with longtime supporters 3M, a leading science-based technology company, and Urenco, an international supplier of enrichment services and nuclear fuel cycle products. We’ve profiled people working at these companies to show young people what jobs in STEM can involve and some examples of how you could land one because there are no 'typical' paths to STEM success. 

The Smashing Stereotypes stories include a series of short films, interviews, and behind-the-scenes photography.   

How to get involved 

Are you Smashing Stereotypes in STEM? We want to hear from you! Share your #SmashingStereotypes story with us on Twitter/X, Instagram, and other social media channels by using the official hashtag. 

For British Science Week 2024, we’ll also be providing a classroom resource designed for young people, parents, teachers, and industry professionals alike, offering an interactive platform to explore STEM careers and delve into the inspiring journeys of our featured profiles. Stay tuned... 

Hannah Russell, Chief Executive, British Science Association (BSA), said: 

As we mark five years of our Smashing Stereotypes campaign, we’re proud to continue celebrating the remarkable stories of trailblazers working across science and engineering, who so powerfully inspire young people about the huge range of careers out there.   In keeping with the British Science Week theme of ‘Time,’ our profiles from this year’s campaign show us that everyone has a unique journey into in the world of STEM. We are grateful to L’Oréal, 3M and Urenco who have partnered with us to champion their diverse and innovative workforces, and who pride themselves on their work to drive change in the future.

Thierry Cheval, Managing Director, L’Oréal UK & Ireland, said:  

L’Oréal is delighted to partner with the British Science Association on their 2024 Smashing Stereotypes campaign to help highlight the vast range of career paths in STEM.   L’Oréal as a company is rooted in science - founded by a scientist over 100 years ago and today with a team of over 4,000 scientists globally - 69% of which are women - constantly innovating across our 37 international beauty brands.    Through our long-standing L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women In Science programme we are committed to driving gender equality in STEM, and the partnership with the British Science Association is a great example of how we can work to collectively pioneer a more inclusive future for STEM careers and generations to come.

Sarah Chapman, 3M North Europe STEM Champion, 3M, said:

We are delighted to continue our support for the inventive Smashing Stereotypes campaign this year as a Strategic Partner of the BSA.

3M and the BSA share a common vision of enhancing young people's perceptions of science and scientists. Additionally, we aim to provide a platform for underrepresented and marginalised voices within the sector.

Rosie Salkeld, Social Impact Lead, Urenco, said:

At Urenco, we're committed to nurturing the next generation of scientists and engineers through our partnership with the British Science Association via education, role models and empowering young people.

By supporting this year's Smashing Stereotypes campaign, we are helping to dispel misconceptions about scientists and drive towards a truly inclusive STEM environment. This is crucial for inspiring young individuals to envision themselves in the sector, bridging the gap between their school lessons and potential careers.