Nationwide is a television programme shown in Ireland each Monday, Wednesday and Friday evening at 19:00. Produced by RTÉ Cork, and broadcast on RTÉ One for around 30 minutes, it is presented by Anne Cassin and Mary Kennedy. On the Friday 9th December, Anne Casin refers to how “unfortunately women continue to be under-represented in the fields of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). Recently the Royal Irish Academy, which is Ireland’s leading body of experts in the sciences and humanities, decided it could and should do something to help address that problem and so along with management consulting firm Accenture, it set up the Women on Walls campaign to try to combat the issue in a visual way“.
Then, Will Goodbody reports on Prof. Debra Laefer, TRUSS supervisor and one of the 8 female contemporary scientists represented in the Women on Walls painting. He introduces Debra as “a UCD engineer leading a team designing systems to produce tridimensional images of buildings and structures from the air“. Siyuan Chen is part of this team and his TRUSS project, ESR14, an example of how to gather 3D features from structures, and more specifically, from road infrastructure. In the interview, Siyuan Chen (ESR14) is featured besides Prof Laefer, who said: “I am delighted to be perceived and to be promoted as a mentor, as a leader. We build each building brick by brick and that is how things change. I became an engineer because I met a female engineer and the things that she brought to that discussion really influenced me and about a year later I decided that I too wanted to have that kind of tool-bag, so I know it works“.
Nationwide focuses on human interest stories and cultural events across the country. The show began airing in the early 1990s, it is RTÉ’s main regional programme, and its average audience for 2009 was 400,000 viewers (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RT%C3%89_One).