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Discovering Toyota’s diverse career paths with STEAM Days

TME Technical Centre invited students to explore the possibilities for their next chapter in life
While outside was the usual cloudy Brussels weather, there was something unusual for the daily work happening inside the TME Technical Centre. In the course of two days, over 500 students visited the facility to discover that the beauty of a STEAM career is that they can do anything!     

Opening students’ minds with STE(A)M

A STEAM* education is key to shaping future innovators and tackling complex global issues. With these fields at the heart of Toyota’s work, our Technical Centre colleagues welcomed students to experience the real-world application of a STEAM career, and to encourage them to explore their logical and analytical mindset.

Alongside showcasing the possibilities, the event aimed to challenge stereotypes and promote diversity within STEAM. Students had the opportunity to meet with Toyota role models and learn about the different career paths within our company. But first, through the following story, they heard how the knowledge and skill set acquired from STEAM can be applied to anything!

*STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics 

Toyota is more than cars: A ‘Mobility for All’ story

When Tyrone Pillay, part of the TME Olympic and Paralympic Division and a Paralympic medal-winning athlete, broke his prosthetic leg last year, he struggled to have it fixed in Belgium. He reached out to the TME R&D team for help, and together with Material Engineering and Toyota GAZOO Racing Europe colleagues, they took on the challenge to make the new prosthetic leg right here at the Technical Centre. They used the same material as in the hydrogen tanks of our cars: carbon fibre reinforced plastic, as it is very strong, resistant and at the same time, light, giving the needed agility to move. In record time, they managed to make the prosthetic leg for Tyrone, which he will be using at the upcoming Paris 2024 Paralympic Games! 
“The idea of making a prosthetic leg here was quite interesting, since Toyota doesn’t make legs, right? But it fitted perfectly with our Mobility for All concept. We’re not just talking about Mobility for All, we’re now actually walking it, literally. Toyota really is so much more than cars – it is about making the impossible possible.”
said Tyrone Pillay, Paralympic medalist

An environment to thrive

Often, excitement and inspiration come from interacting with mentors and hands-on experience. During STEAM Days, students had this opportunity through discussions with our engineers, and attending the workshops of their choice, out of 14 different options. Below we capture some of the highlights:

In the UX Driving Simulator room, students shared their ideas on improving the user experience of a car, from the future layout of the cockpit to the size of the glove compartment.

In the GAZOO race car workshop, it smelled of a heat gun and fibre materials, as students were busy at work building different race car parts.

During the Hydrogen Experience workshop, participants created their very own hydrogen, used it to do a performance check on a prototype car, and drove a radio-controlled hydrogen car. 

“I learned a lot here because I had a chance to see what people actually do on the different teams, how they work, and to ‘experience’ how a car is brought to life from people’s knowledge. It really shows me how powerful of a weapon knowledge really is.”
Student, senior in high school

A window to your future

This year marked the second edition of STEAM Days, with successful follow-up outcomes already at hand. Speaking on his experience, Mathias, a former attendee of Sint-Ursula high school, shared with participants how, as part of his higher education studies, he had to complete an internship at a company of his choice. With a passion in Automotive Engineering and Motorsports, and having had attended STEAM Days, he got in touch with TME to explore the possibilities. His dream was to do the internship with the Toyota Gazoo Racing (TGR) team, and after being put in touch with them and going through an interview, that is exactly the opportunity he received!  


“Dare to dream big! I took a really big jump by going to TGR for my internship and I expected to be shot down immediately, but that did not happen at all. In fact, when you decide to take such a jump, people often applaud you for doing so!”
Mathias, former STEAM Days participant

Girls STEM the future: empowering female talent

Equal opportunities for all is a non-negotiable commitment for us at Toyota. Studies show that the low female representation in STE(A)M jobs is a problem for Europe, where only 18% of engineers and scientist in manufacturing are women. We are dedicated to increasing that number and put emphasise on creating opportunities for young women. STEAM Days are part of a wider programme we have developed – Girls STEM the Future. It aims to break stereotypes on girls and STEM careers, and to inspire them to explore careers in the respective areas through interaction with female role models from Toyota.