Taste of top sci­ence tempts Toko­roa pair

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

In­ter­ac­tive, hands-on field and lab work were the high­lights for two For­est View High School stu­dents at­tend­ing the Hill Lab­o­ra­to­ries Waikato Sci­ence Sum­mer School last week.

The week-long ac­tion-packed Sum­mer School ran in De­cem­ber at the Univer­sity of Waikato, and gave 40 ta­lented year 12 stu­dents from around the cen­tral North Is­land the chance to get a taste for what it can be like to study sci­ence and engineering at a ter­tiary level.

For Toko­roa stu­dents Leonie Nu­groho and Western Wil­son, the jour­ney be­gan with a full-on two day field trip dur­ing which they ex­plored the ar­eas of Kawhia and Wait­omo. The group searched for fos­sils at Puti Point, col­lected zoo­plank­ton sam­ples at the Kawhia jetty and en­joyed a walk through the Ruakuri Caves.

The re­main­der of the week was spent in Waikato Univer­sity’s sci­ence and engineering labs, analysing sam­ples, con­duct­ing ex­per­i­ments and build­ing pro­to­types to bet­ter un­der­stand the en­vi­ron­men­tal and so­cial changes the lo­cal coastal and cave en­vi­ron­ments have un­der­gone over time. Group pre­sen­ta­tions by the stu­dents ended the week.

‘‘The Sum­mer School was an amaz­ing op­por­tu­nity to learn about sci­ence and engineering, but also to meet a whole range of new peo­ple, which has been awe­some,’’ Leonie says.

Main spon­sor Hill Lab­o­ra­to­ries is the coun­try’s largest pri­vately owned an­a­lyt­i­cal test­ing lab­o­ra­tory. The Sum­mer School in­cluded a visit to the com­pany’s lab­o­ra­to­ries for a tour of their fa­cil­i­ties.

‘‘For those pas­sion­ate about sci­ence, it is a life­long jour­ney. We are proud to be sup­port­ing th­ese ta­lented young stu­dents who have be­gun their own jour­ney of sci­en­tific dis­cov­ery, and look for­ward to the con­tri­bu­tions they will make in their cho­sen fields in fu­ture years,’’ says Dr Jonathan Hill, Hill Lab­o­ra­to­ries en­vi­ron­men­tal di­vi­sions man­ager.

Waikato’s Sum­mer School is an an­nual event run by Ro­tary Dis­trict 9930 and Waikato Univer­sity’s Fac­ulty of Sci­ence and Engineering, with spon­sor­ship from Hill Lab­o­ra­to­ries.

Close look: Two For­est View High School pupils, Leonie Nu­groho and Western Wil­son, were among the 40 Year 12 stu­dents who at­tended the Hill Lab­o­ra­to­ries Waikato Sci­ence Sum­mer School at the Univer­sity of Waikato.

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