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This week is National Science Week, and is seeing a number of events to celebrate strides in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Innovation (STEMI). This initiative is run in multiple sites per province, and this year’s theme is “Advancing Science Tourism”.

National Science Week kicks offThe African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) South Africa hosted the Science Week activities in Khayelitsha, with learners from schools around the area participating. The event was also attended by various exhibitors from Higher Education, the Science Council, the City of Cape Town and the private sector.

“We aim at ensuring that young people get exposed in the science field. This is one of the areas that need to be strengthened. We believe that they should start being exposed to science at a young age. We have a lot of talented young people. Science should be fun and youth must be attracted to it like they do in soccer or any other sport. Some seeds need to be planted for future,” said Barry Green, director of AIMS, at the event.

“We have an educational programme where we give bursaries to 50 students from different countries on the continent every year to study towards degrees in science. We also work in partnership with different universities across the world, and have seen success ever since we started the programme in 2003.”

Similarly, the Renewable Energy Investments South Africa (Reisa) Scholarship Fund offers tertiary education funding for youth living within a 50 km radius of a solar facility. The focus is to contribute towards human resource development in fields considered critical for the South African economy, and study fields covered by the programme include teaching, engineering, natural and social sciences, environment and nursing.

Local Gr. 11 and Gr. 12 learners from Kathu, Olifantshoek, Dibeng, Siya-themba and Mapoteng in the Northern Cape currently have the opportunity to apply for a region-specific scholarship through the Reisa Scholarship fund. “These high school learners normally tend to have limited opportunities to access scholarships. That is why we specifically target learners in these beneficiary towns in order for them not to have to compete against learners from other provinces,” says Sizile Mabaso, Chief Community Operations Officer of Reisa.

The programme offers full or partial scholarships. Schools include the Gamagara High School, the Kathu High School and the Langberg High School.

Image credit:  Copyright: server / 123RF Stock Photo

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