Hundreds of enthusiastic budding young scientists took the stage to exhibit their outstanding scientific and innovative research projects at the Ehlanzeni Regional final of the Eskom Expo for Young Scientists.
A notable turnout of 464 learners in grades 4 to 12 from the region gathered to present their research projects at the event held at the University of Mpumalanga on 5 August 2023. The evaluation of the 336 projects on display was carried out by 200 judges, comprising educators, specialists, scholars, and avid Eskom Expo supporters.
This regional expo was one of 38 regional expos planed across all provinces in South Africa. This year witnessed an impressive influx of entries in the Engineering category, with 121 innovative projects submitted. Furthermore, a significant amount of interest was observed in the Energy and Biomedical Sciences categories.
Six exceptional young scientists were awarded the prestigious Eskom Special Awards at the region’s awards ceremony. The learners, who received Bluetooth speakers, were:
- Best female: Haley Nizole Cussons and Daniell Grobler from Hoërskool Nelspruit
- Best innovation: Makamo Cavin from Suikerland Secondary School
- Best energy project: Owethu Buthelezi and Nsingwane Mpilonhle from Sitintile Secondary
- Best development project: Shabangu Nombuso Innocentia from Mbhudula Secondary
Other special prizes were awarded to:
- Best in Agriculture/Animal Sciences: Magagula Vumani from Sikhwahlane Secondary
- Best in Biochemistry: Lira Grobbelaar and Naledi Mabula from Penryn College
- Best in Environmental/Earth Science: Mabuza Ngowami from Mountain View Primary
- Best in Mathematics: Surprise Milanzi from Sibusisiwe Secondary School
- Best in Engineering: Mahlalela Mpendulo from Driekoppies Combined
- Best in Social Sciences: Repinga Providents from Sophungane Secondary School
Furthermore, a total of 50 learners received bronze medals, 46 were awarded silver medals, while 35 were awarded the highly coveted gold medals. Komatipoort Akademie secured the highest number of gold medals, and overall medals at the event.
Eskom Expo Executive Director, Parthy Chetty, said: “Eskom Expo’s promotion of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and innovation (STEMI) at the school level is exemplified by the significant role played by this event. It not only provides a platform for talented young scientists to showcase their innovations but also exposes them to a world of exciting career opportunities in diverse scientific fields. The outstanding projects presented by learners, particularly those from previously disadvantaged backgrounds and girls, serve as a beacon of hope for a promising future. Congratulations to all the well-deserved medal winners, and we extend our best wishes for even greater achievements at the upcoming Eskom Expo International Science Fair (ISF).”
Advancing learners from the region will have the opportunity to compete against the country’s most exceptional young scientists at the ISF, scheduled for October 2023. This prestigious event offers participants the chance to win prizes, bursaries, scholarships, and various other opportunities. Moreover, learners stand a chance to be selected to present their research and innovations at international science fairs held in the United States of America, Asia, Europe, and across Africa.
For dates and venues of upcoming regional science fairs, click here.