LIMPOPO – “The future of the African continent is dependent on the next generation. Therefore, it is our duty to develop the next generation of talented scientists and entrepreneurs who can take up the opportunity to create new technologies and innovative solutions for the pressing problems facing our communities,” said Prof Natasha Potgieter, Dean for the School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences during the official opening of 2017 National Science Week.
The event was held last Monday at Vuwani Science Resource Centre.
She added that the centre was making a huge contribution to developing science in the country. “It is actively involved in projects that create awareness of the value of Science and Technology and the role it plays in ensuring sustainable community development engagements.”
National Science Week (NSW) is an initiative of the Department of Science and Technology (DST). This is to celebrate various role players conducting science-based activities during the week. National Science Week is run in all nine provinces simultaneously at multiple sites per province.
This year’s National Science Week was held from 5 to 12 August under the theme: ‘Advancing Science Tourism,’ in recognition of the United Nation’s International year of sustainable tourism for development.
The Deputy Vice Chancellor: Academic, Prof Jan Crafford, told the learners that they are the hope of the country’s future.
“One of the biggest challenges in our country is to increase the number of female scientists,” he said.
He advised female learners to go for science and mathematics centered courses to contribute to scientific innovation.
He added that the National Science Week has, over the previous years, been held and celebrated during Women’s Month and that this might be a sign that it needs to be linked with women of this country.
Crafford thanked students from the University of Warwick for their assistance, especially those who helped high school teachers with science and mathematics.
He also encouraged learners to gather enough information and make use of the opportunity given.