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2017/08/18 07:06:00 PM

The University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) celebrated National Science Week in style this year

UKZN celebrated National Science Week with a series of public and school-based events
The University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) celebrated National Science Week in style this year.

Firstly, local school pupils enjoyed access to a fun-filled week of scientific activities run by the
Science and Technology Education Centre (STEC@UKZN) at the Westville campus. Staff went the
extra mile to keep the bevy of eager Grade 10 and Grade 11 pupils wowed by the whole
spectrum of scientific wonders available at UKZN.

Accommodating up to 60 learners a day, the programme offered an array of hands-on fun that
covered scientific disciplines such as electrical engineering, mathematics, statistics, biodiversity,
microscopy, astronomy, microbiology, chemistry, physics, biology and geology.

For phase two of the week’s campaign, the College organised two highly successful Great UKZN
Science Show-Offs, aimed at the whole family. These science shows, held at the Pietermaritzburg
and Westville campuses, saw the famous “Dr T” – aka Tanja Reinhardt, Dr Vincent Couling and Mr
Ajay Bissessur battle it out on the scientific stage. Their scientific tricks, treats, whooshes and bangs
kept their audiences amused and amazed.

Ever wanted to make a fire tornado? Or a rocket? Or make a pole sing? Or see a wave dance?
Or find out just how smelly chemicals can be? The three scientists made sure that they offered
something for everyone as they brought the magic of science to life.

On a more serious note, the final leg of UKZN’s National Science Week celebrations saw renowned
Terrestrial Vertebrate Ecologist, Professor Colleen Downs, present a public talk on the persistence
of wildlife in urban areas, from a KwaZulu-Natal perspective. Downs holds the DST/NRF SouthAfrican Research Chair (SARChI) in Ecosystem Health and Biodiversity in KwaZulu-Natal and the
Eastern Cape and is the winner of numerous scientific accolades and awards, including most 
recently the 2017 National Science and Technology Forum (NSTF)-South32 Award for Research
Capacity Development.

National Science Week is celebrated every year during the first week of August. A Department ofScience and Technology initiative, run in partnership with public and private institutions, it aims to
further the public’s understanding of science and to advance science and technology within
South Africa.
> Click here to view the gallery 

Sally Frost


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