STEM fair a success

STEM fair a success
Rudi Bowe

Fifty one girls participated in the first ever Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Fair for girls. The Fair was hosted at the Walvis Bay civic centre town hall. The purpose of the event is to encouraging girls from Grades 1 to 12 to become interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, believed to be traditionally male dominated fields in the past.
Learners from !Nara Primary School, Narraville Primary School, Alexander Private School, Kuisebmond Primary School, Kuisebmond Secondary School, Fla-mingo Secondary School, De Duine Secondary School and Walvis Bay Primary School participated in the STEM Fair. DebMarine Namibia sponsored the event.
The deputy mayor of Walvis Bay, Clr Penelope Martin, on behalf of the mayor of Walvis Bay, Alderman Immanuel Wilfried said: “When children are exposed to these types of activities at a young age, it is more likely that they will develop a passion for it, and become experts in those fields. It is through such initiatives that we as parents are showing to our children the seriousness of education and the need to deliver excellent results.”
Martin further explained that early childhood care and development lay the foundation for every human being’s physical, cognitive, social and emotional development.
“In the fast paced world we live in today, children have become lost in the world of TV games, mobile phones and the Internet. With this said, I would also like to urge the children to minimise time spent indulging in these activities which do not benefit them and often distort their concept of reality and also causing stress. Equally, parents should be involved and monitor their children when it comes to activities on social media, Internet and video games”.
Martin further said the century in which we live today has a great appetite for people with innovative ideas. Specifically those aimed at solving challenges facing health and other sectors with the view to improve the quality of life of people.
The general manager: Operations at Rössing Uranium, Liezl Davies, also encouraged girls by saying they can do everything and anything they put their minds to.
“Don’t let anyone tell you, you can’t do it. You can have it all, a great career, being a mother and wife. The only condition is you need to make a difference. You are not allowed to live your life in vain. Your duty is to find the reason why you are here. We’re not in competition with the men of this world. The rise of females, does not mean the fall of men.” She added.
The founder and organiser of STEM, Anastacia de Klerk said that the event was created to encourage girls from Grades 1 to 12 to become interested in science, technology, engineering and mathematics which were believed to be male dominated fields in the past.
De Klerk is quoted in this regard: “The STEM fair aims to help provide learners with opportunities to make meaningful connections to the real world as they develop skills, behaviour and dispositions necessary for college, career and life readiness”.
Adding: “Our main goal is to encourage girls to take part in scientific exploration and dis-covery and promote a deep, lifelong passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
“We hope to make the STEM fair an annual scientific event for girls to look forward to, since the national science fair collapsed due to funding. We’re in the process of setting up a scholarship fund for girls who wish to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and technology fields”.
De Klerk and her committee are still in need of more sponsors and would like to request the corporate world to come on board along with Debmarine Namibia to help the girls child with their dreams.
Various prizes were up for grabs for the girls. One of them is the attendance of an inter-national science fair expo in Mexico, from 25 November to 4 December. an opportunity to travel to Abu Dhabi, in September 2019 to participate at the MILSET Expo Science International and to participate at the Genius Olympiad in New York in June 2019.
Two learners will also display their projects at the Information Technology and Com-munication Youth Summit in Windhoek in October.
The winners were as follows:
Raina Samuel and Selma Kalimbo will participating at the Ministry of Information, Science and Communication Technology Youth Summit.
Aaliyah Mbambi and Selma Kalimbo are selected to participate in the international science fair in Mexico.
Laura Damster and Ashley Rheeder participate in the Abu Dhabi in 2019.
Fenny Shilongo will participate in the Genius Olympiad in New York USA next year.
Gold:
Laura Damster, Dominique Petersen, Kristin Peterson, Liors Beukes, Claudia Shivute, Shenae von Bosch, Ashley Rheeder, Alliyah Mbambi, Selma Kalimbo, Dominique Stein and Raina Samuel.
Silver:
Priscilla Shongola, Anna-Kalaula Mulundu, Precious Frans, Fenny Shongola, Elizabeth Kashimbode, Helena Uusiku, Hilalia Petrus, Jessica Stein, Martha Kolowali, Tuno Andima, Raquel Strauss, Helvi Shuudifonya, Stacey Damster, Annike Welgemoed, Martha Shikesho and Endaline Appolis.
Bronze:
Wendy Hamukwaya, Rongeree Kambutuku, Nadia Neumbo, Selma Matheus, Letifa Brendell, Chloe Cloete, Josephina Shipopyeni, Joriana Mwapopile, Leckinat Mulun-dileni, Chantelle Twowases, Roxanne Nuas, Janet Mwapopile, Pali Letwaama, Penny Ekandjo, Caroline Kanganga, Elizabeth Akuunda, Emilia Silas, Wilhelmine Ngolo-yimwe, Sela Shimmii and Zoe Mafwila.
De Klerk extends her gratitude towards DebMarine Namibia, Mr Jan Kruger from the Municipality of Walvis Bay, Felicia Pritzlaff, Coca Cola, Taati Niilenge, Frieda Shikoyeni and The Johannes Shikoyeni Trust, Salinde Skrywer, Koekie Palmer, Ebenetha Petersen and Aristides Sambiliye who sponsored some of the trophies and medals with-out thinking twice. The Ministry of Information and Communication Technology for sponsoring a prize, Jonathan Wilsnach from EYE Namibia for sponsoring a prizes, Zenzi Awases who believed in this event so much that she helped us to secure our main sponsor, Ms Liezl Davies and the Women in Mining Association in Namibia, The Deputy Mayor of Walvis Bay, all the judges for availing themselves the STEM team, Vanessa, Reeva, Ayden, Janice, Justin, Mary, Laura, Oletu, Omagano and Josephine, Mr Collin de la Harpe and Mr Red The Nara Primary School Choir and their conductor Allistaire v.d. Merwe, Demi Sylvester and Raquel Strauss My School Principal Mrs Damens, Uhm en Juffrou The school principals, parents and teachers who took the time to enrolled their kids, all of the girls who took part in the Walvis Bay STEM Fair for Girls and every one that supported the event.

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