Girls inspired to become scientists
Girls inspired to become scientists
Sharing her life experiences: Motivational speaker Dr Thokozani Xaba, a lecturer in the faculty of Applied and Computer Sciences
In today’s world, science and technology plays a very important role as they have provided advancement in our daily lives and in economic development. Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects allow learners to take advantage of all the opportunities these fields offer.
The Vaal University of Technology (VUT) has also taken the initiative to introduce young girls to STEM and to give them a better idea of the opportunities available. On 21 August 2018, VUT hosted a special seminar in this regard at the Desmond Tutu Great Hall.
Through the seminar, VUT invites exceptional women who have excelled in their careers in the STEM fields to interact and serve as role models for young girls in high school and undergraduate students registered at VUT attached to faculties of Engineering and Technology and Applied and Computer Sciences. We hope that this exposure will encourage female learners to excel in STEM-related subjects and thus increase their chances of being accepted at tertiary institutions or follow a careers in this direction.
The Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic and Research, Professor Kuzvinetsa Dzvimbo welcomed all guests present to the event and encouraged the young women to focus on science, technology and engineering as there is a shortage of female scientists in the country. The event was graced with the presence of the Executive Mayor of Sedibeng; Cllr Busisiwe Modisakeng who gave a message of support. She urged the girl children to respect their teachers and parents and focus on achieving better results in their studies. “I hope that we can change the 12% women participation in STEM related careers to a better percentage through the STEM Seminar hosted by VUT annually, she said”.
The motivational speaker Dr Thokozani Xaba, a lecturer in the faculty of Applied and Computer Sciences shared her life experiences and how she got to where she is today. She encouraged the young women to always put God and education first. In her speech, she emphasised the importance of patience and humility within the field of science and technology and encouraged these young women to support one another and never to lose hope.
The keynote address was presented by the Executive Director of Technology Transfer and Innovation, Dr Joe Molete. In his presentation, he encouraged learners to find their sweat spots through generating new ideas, making impact, building their own brands, learn to love generously which will ultimately lead to generating profit. He also said that: “science teaches you to think constructively and nothing stops you from changing from your original idea.”.
“You can fail in life and yet you become somebody”, he said.
The girls also had an opportunity to tour the laboratories of the faculties of Applied & Computer Science and Engineering & Technology.
Learners asking questions in one of the VUT labs visited
The girls received goodie bags with personal care items donated by Thusong Projects, under the Vesco Group and Laboratory Coats sponsored by VUT. Sponsors of the event were VUT Science and Technology Park, VUT IHAU and Corporate Affairs. Congratulations to the organising team (Mesdames Kediemetse Mokotsi: Director Marketing & PR; Palesa Ubane: Public Relations Practitioner; Carol Motale and Nolutho Mkhumbeni both lecturers in Health Sciences: Faculty of Applied and Computer Sciences) for the job well done, through the support of the Corporate Affairs team and other support departments.
Learners in their Lab coats and goodie bags sponsored by VUT and Thusong Projects