Department hosted 80 high school learners at 2017 HUB Science Expo

14 Oct 2017
14 Oct 2017


Read what the learners thought | The full programme

The Department of Human Biology is committed to outreach and the promotion of scientific workshops to high school learners and their teachers to (a) encourage them to follow a career in STEM and (b) to promote the diverse career options and disciplines on offer within our Department. We are also hoping that through these workshops we can encourage diversity in future applicants to our postgraduate student program.

The 2017 HUB Science Expo was hosted on the 3rd October 2017, on the Sports Science Institute of South Africa (SSISA) campus, home to the Division of Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, University of Cape Town. Eighty-four learners from Belgravia High, Westerford High, Pinelands High, South Peninsula and Curro Schools participated in this full day program. Learners were divided into teams of 5 and rotated between several interactive workstations, with the task of completing a series of questions relating to the content of the stations. These workstations provided a platform for scholars to engage with research, basic concepts in medical research and to experience hands on cutting edge technologies currently being employed by our colleagues within the Department. The workstations were designed around selected areas of expertise in the Department of Human Biology and included:

  • Cell-fie (Dr Hapiloe Maranyane, Dr Amaal Abrahams; members of Prof Prince’s Lab)
  • Growing a new skin (Dr Robea Ballo, Dennis Lin and Austin Malise)
  • As far as the eyes can see (Dr Elizabeth Van Der Merwe, Viantha Naidoo)
  • It is all in the mind (SANS & Translational Neuroscience Group: Dr Fleur Howells, Sarah Heany, Ruth Levin-Vorster, Antoinette Burger, Lauren Blake)
  • Role of the brain-heart axis in hand grip performance (Dr Laurie Rauch and Tasneem Paruk)
  • DNA Discovery (Dr Masouda Rahim, Dr M-J Nancy Laguette, Andrea Gibbon and the GEMs Team)
  • The MyoLab - Science in Motion (Dr Tertius Kohn, Nur Armino, Dr Dorothy Breed, Dr Franclo Henning, Kathryn van Boom, Deena Veeren)
  • Test your sprinting power (Dr Michael Posthumus, Ayden Smith and Team)
  • Move4life (Dr Jacolene Kroff and team)
  • Rugby Tackle Contact (Dr Sharief Hendricks and Team)
  • Biomechanics of Human Movement (Dr Nicholas Tam, Dr Yumna Albertus and Team)

Workstations were interactive and both learners and teachers were fascinated by the research and application of technology currently being used within the South African environment. The program ended with an opportunity to ask more questions and 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes were awarded to teams which had satisfactorily completed the task and answered the questions correctly, whilst all learners received a certificate of attendance. Furthermore, the HUB Science Expo provided an invaluable opportunity for our postgraduate students to practice their communication skills and inform the community about research conducted at the university. This event was partially sponsored by The Noakes Foundation, DST-NRF, SSISA and Elite Cash and Carry. A/Prof Alison September was the co-ordinator of this event and her committee comprised of Dr M-J Nancy Laguette, Dr Masouda Rahim, Mrs Lesa Sivewright, Mrs Ayesha Hendricks, Mr Trevino Larry, Mr Neezaam Karriem, Dr Amaal Abrahams, Dr Jill Fortuin Abrahams and SSISA.