Designed to provide a learning extension program for students in Years 7 to 12 for whom additional challenges would be beneficial, the Exceptional Scientists’ Program continued in 2016 to enrich the learning of many students. We have achieved the best results ever in competitions, responses to opportunities in STEM areas are overwhelming and the number of students accepted into highly selective programs continues to rise.
We continue to engage with tertiary institutions to offer extension opportunities for able students. Involvement with STEM workshops at QUT offers Years 8, 9 and 10 students specially designed workshops, where they are are exposed to STEM extension activities which extend them beyond the normal core curriculum. They use computer software unavailable at school to explore areas of astrophysics and enjoy the challenge of programming Arduino microprocessors.
Many other opportunities to engage students in challenging activities and to inspire their love of Science include excursions to the annual Churchie Physics Lecture, the AIP Youth Physics Lecture, WE explore Engineering day at UQ, StemCells@UQ, Aspiring Women in Science Conference, QUT Power of Engineering, Engineering Link Forum, and the Seymour-Whyte Breakfast.
Individual students have excelled in this program as they are provided with opportunities of which they would
otherwise be unaware. The National Youth Science Forum is one such program. The selection process is rigorous and for those accepted to attend the ten-day forum in Canberra, the experience is life-changing. CHAC continues to be well represented in this program. Students also applied for and were selected for prestigious programs such as the QUT Vice-Chancellor’s STEM camp which takes place in the September holidays.