- 29 November 2018
Over 150 Year 7 and 8 students from Crookwell, Murrumburrah, Boorowa and Yass participated in the ‘Build me a Future Day’ on Thursday at Crookwell High School, with Yass High School winning the competition.
The ‘Build ME a Future Day’ was hosted by The University of Newcastle’s Science and Engineering Challenge, with support from RDA Southern Inland. The event is part of a pilot program funded by the NSW Department of Education aimed at providing students with age appropriate STEM skills. The focus of the event was to build on students’ awareness of the real-world application of Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths (STEM) skills. The event is aimed at inspiring students to choose STEM related subjects for their remaining years of school and hopefully pursue a career in one of these fields. The top growth jobs in the future, Project Engineering, Ambulance/Paramedics, Mining, Clinical/Medical Research and Engineering Drafting, all require STEM skills so events like this are essential for students.
The students competed in teams of two-four across eight activities and points were awarded for effectiveness and efficiency. Challenges included constructing an earthquake‐proof tower, building a bridge and designing and building artificial fingers.
Camilla Staff, Project Officer at RDA Southern Inland, helped to coordinate the schools and volunteers for the event.
“It was great to see a network of schools come together to compete in hands-on STEM challenges. Energy was high throughout the day and I think the students had a ball. The day really shows students how the skills and knowledge they learn in STEM class can be applied in real life situations.”
At the end of the day, students, teachers and volunteers assembled to witness the results from the bridge challenge, where students tested the sturdiness of their bridge. Following this, Councillor Paul Culhane presented certificates to all participating schools and presented Yass High School with the winning plaque.
Isabel Nelson, Community Engagement Officer at BJCE Australia, owner of Gullen Range Wind and Solar Farm, supervised the water turbine challenge. Isabel said, “We’ve been supporting STEM in local schools for a couple of years. The recent two terms mentoring students in this program has been very rewarding. The level of creativity and enthusiasm I saw from the students today was spectacular.”
The day would not have been possible without all of the generous volunteers who donated their time to supervise the various challenges. RDA Southern Inland would like to especially thank the Crookwell Men’s Shed, Crookwell, Goulburn, Goulburn Mulwaree Rotary and Goulburn Argyle Rotary Clubs, Gullen Range Wind and Solar Farm and the volunteers from RDA Southern Inland.
Councillor Paul Culhane with the Yass High School students