"Scientists and engineers are the real superheroes"

14 February 2018
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Brian David Johnson and will.i.am spoke to Yewande Akinola.

will.i.am and Brian David Johnson inspire STEM minds at Savoy Place.

‘Choosing STEM, means the opportunity to do something life changing’, is the resounding message left with young people by global music artist, tech entrepreneur and STEM education advocate will.i.am and futurist Brian David Johnson, at a book talk and signing, hosted by the IET last week.


The authors teamed up for the event at IET London: Savoy Place, to discuss their new young-adult novel, ‘Wizards and Robots’ – an action-packed, STEM-inspired adventure.


During the event, the pair gave an insight into their own work and vision, predictions for the future and how the innovators of tomorrow have the power to change the world.


During the Q&A with past IET Young Woman Engineer of the Year, Yewande Akinola, will.i.am said: “Engineering is the coolest thing in the world, but it’s also the world’s best kept secret.  If you want to solve the world’s problems, this is the way you go about it. That’s some superhero stuff right there. The real superheroes are scientists and engineers.”


will.i.am was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the IET in 2017 alongside Professor Polina Bayvel, Dr Dolores Byrne and Dr Hermann Hauser. During his visit to Savoy Place will.i.am took the opportunity to sign his name in the IET’s ‘Roll of Honorary Fellows and Faraday Medallists’ book. The honour dates back to 1873 and is awarded to esteemed scientists, technicians and engineers, recognised by the IET as having made a significant contribution to the advancement of engineering and technology innovation across the world.


Nigel Fine, Chief Executive of the IET, said: “will.i.am is an enthusiastic user of technologies in both his professional and personal life, fusing the worlds of technology, culture, fashion, and artificial intelligence across his work and is an incredible STEM role model to young people.


“The IET works hard to inspire young people about STEM and how its endless possibilities could lead to an exciting and fulfilling career in engineering and technology. Having advocates like will.i.am adding so much passion to its importance, will go a long way to ensuring we secure the next generation of engineers and innovators.”


The ‘WaR: Wizards and Robots’ event highlights video is available to watch on IET.tv. A video of the full event is also available on IET.tv.