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Supporting and inspiring young scientists


This highly successful mentoring programme for senior phase high school students is part of the ongoing partnership between Edinburgh BioQuarter and Castlebrae Community Campus.

Science Mentors is hosted in the Castlebrae Superlab and open to all S4-6 pupils at Castlebrae Community Campus.

Staff and students from across Edinburgh BioQuarter volunteer to share their expertise and experience with the young people of Castlebrae, as well as supporting them in their academic studies.


The mentoring programme was established in 2015 by the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Regenerative Medicine (CRM), a world-leading medical research centre located on Edinburgh BioQuarter that is now a part of the wider Institute for Regeneration and Repair.

The programme was the brainchild of a former postdoctoral researcher at the Centre, Sabine Gogolok, who wanted to develop further links with the local high school and support their pupils in the study of science.

Over the years, the scheme has expanded beyond CRM and now recruits from the wide diversity of staff and students across Edinburgh BioQuarter.

Find out more about the origins of the programme

Mutual Benefit

Initially established to guide young people through their exam period, the scheme’s success has come from the positive force the mentors provide in the pupils’ lives, whilst the mentors themselves report a strong sense of satisfaction in supporting the young people.

” I would recommend anyone who is passionate about science outreach, public engagement and giving back to the local community to volunteer with Science Mentors and other Community Outreach programmes.

” The Outreach programmes have been a wonderful experience; gaining experience in teaching, science communication and outreach while also developing skills such as communication, leadership and critical thinking.

” Not only is it an incredibly worthwhile and inspiring experience that makes an important difference in the lives of young people – it’s lots of fun too! “ – Kellie Horan, Science Mentor

The Programme

What’s involved

The aim of the mentoring programme is to offer insight into what real science looks like and help local school pupils with their studies.

The mentors provide support through:

  • supported study
  • help with coursework and exam questions
  • advice on how to do practical work
  • boosting the students confidence in science and their science capital
  • teaching positive learning skill
  • sharing experience of university life and what career options are available with a STEM background

The programme involves weekly 60 minute sessions, mostly at the school and with some sessions on Edinburgh BioQuarter (with the lure of pizza!).

The sessions run in small groups of mentors and mentees, and are supervised by a teacher from the school. Sessions are also supported by Dom Cairns-Gibson, Education and Engagement Development Officer.

Get involved

Recruitment for volunteers to support the mentoring programme in the academic year 2023/24 has now closed.

We had an excellent response and thank you to everyone who applied and expressed interest.

We will be recruiting again next year (July/August) with training sessions running in August and October.

Science Mentors is open to everyone on Edinburgh BioQuarter who has a passion for STEM and would like to share that with the local community. While a background in science can be helpful, it is not a requirement.

If you work or study on Edinburgh BioQuarter and would like to be contacted with opportunities to take part in Community Engagement Projects, please register interest.


If you have any questions, please get in touch with Castlebrae.Superlab@edinburghbioquarter.com