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Alumni Voices: 'Be the change you want to see' - The story of Francis Jones

Francis Jones (MA STEM Education, 2022) is the founder of STEM@Home, a tech startup that seeks to bridge the accessibility gap in science education by providing portable hardware that integrates with artificial intelligence (AI); their work allows students to do their required science practicals outside of the conventional science classroom. We spoke to Francis about the role King's has played in his career, his thoughts on the importance of mentorship, and the advice he has for alumni and students.

An invaluable experience

My time at King's was nothing short of transformational. The support and guidance I received was invaluable in shaping the methodology behind STEM@Home, helping to ensure its effectiveness in the world of science education. King's was the guiding force behind our early product development and helped pave the path toward commercialisation.

When I first joined King's, I believed that science and the creative arts were siloed; separate and without overlap. My opinion was changed by a micro course that King's offered on how art can be used to visualise the abstract concepts of science. This helped me see how art and science are linked together and this is what led to the development of STEM@Home.

In particular, I'm profoundly grateful to two remarkable individuals who played a pivotal role in my journey – my personal tutor Dr Richard Brock (Senior Lecturer in Science Education) and Professor Heather King (Professor in Science Education). Their belief in the vision of STEM@Home, along with their guidance and expertise, provided the foundation for the success that we enjoy today. Their commitment to fostering innovation and entrepreneurship in students like me is a testament to King's College London's dedication to nurturing talent and ideas.


Francis is smiling and standing behind a stall upon which information about STEM@Home can be seen.

Be the change you want to see

My journey from King's to founding STEM@Home has been inspired by a simple belief – 'Be the change you want to see in the world.' I realised that the world needed accessible science education that empowers students. And if it didn't exist, I had to make it exist.

My personal and professional experiences drove me to build something that would not only transform the lives of students, but also make science education more inclusive. I encourage each one of you to reflect on your own experiences and aspirations, for therein lies the spark of innovation and change. Since then, we have sold hundreds of products and we're currently prototyping our AI marking software. We have gained support from private and public-sector bodies.

I realised that the world needed accessible science education that empowers students. And if it didn't exist, I had to make it exist.– Francis Jones

Where it all began

Reflecting on my time at King's, I vividly remember the discussions and brainstorming sessions with my professors, both within the classrooms of the Waterloo campus and online. It was in those very corridors of knowledge that STEM@Home was conceived.

What stood out the most was the collaborative spirit that permeated the institution. At King's, I found a community that encouraged bold ideas and innovative thinking. It was there that I learned the importance of challenging the status quo and pushing boundaries.

Outside of academia, my memories of the 'Mayor of London's Entrepreneur Competition' at the new London City Hall stood out a lot. This was my first opportunity to showcase STEM@Home to a large audience; it was a very daunting experience, but I finished as a runner-up in the social enterprise category. 

Francis Jones speaking at the Mayor's Entrepreneur competition

Seek support and give back

To my fellow alumni who aspire to replicate the success of STEM@Home, I offer this advice: reach out to your supervisors and professors, even after you graduate. Their expertise and guidance can be invaluable in turning your vision into reality. The mentorship and support I received at King's extended beyond my time as a student and led me to pursue a PhD.

Remember, success is not a solo journey. Collaboration and mentorship are the building blocks of achievement. As alumni you have the opportunity to give back, whether it's through mentorship, collaboration or supporting the next generation of innovators.

I hope my journey can serve as an inspiration, reminding you that with the right support and determination, you too can make a difference in the world.

Thank you King's, and especially Richard and Heather, for being the catalyst in this remarkable journey.

If you would like to read more about STEM@Home, visit or reach out to Francis directly at You can also find STEM@Home on LinkedIn, TikTok and Instagram.

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In this story

Francis Jones

Francis Jones

Alumnus of the STEM Education MA

Heather King

Heather King

Professor in Science Education

Richard Brock

Richard Brock

Senior Lecturer in Science Education

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