Learners from 37 previously disadvantaged schools in the Umlazi and Pinetown districts attended a Grade 9 Expo hosted on UKZN’s Edgewood campus by the College of Agriculture, Engineering and Science in partnership with the eThekwini Municipality and the Department of Education.
The Expo offered career guidance and encouraged learners to choose subjects in the fields of Science and Mathematics.
Special guests, eThekwini’s Deputy City Manager, Mr P Mashoko and Deputy Head, Human Resources, Mr G Vundla, addressed the learners, followed by speakers from UKZN, Mangosuthu University of Technology, Durban University of Technology, Mahle Bher, and Women in Engineering.
Exhibitors included UKZN, Metrorail, the Department of Education, eThekwini Municipality, Women in Engineering and MUT.
Delivering the opening address, Vundla encouraged learners to not only participate in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), but to ‘follow their dreams, never give up and transform the world one day’.
Mashoko spoke about his journey in becoming an engineer, his passion for mathematics and his drive to achieve good results.
UKZN speakers included the Public Relations Manager for the College of Law and Management Studies, Ms Hazel Langa, UKZN’s Schools Liaison Officer, Mr Sbusiso Kheswa, and postgraduate students, Ms Sne Skhosane and Ms Phindile Dladla.
Speakers emphasised the importance of the points system and gave valuable information about career options at UKZN, while Chemistry and Physics Lecturer Dr Mathew Moodley wowed the learners with his science experiments.
Ayanda Njubane, a learner from the Buhlebemfundo Secondary School, said: ‘The expo helped me to decide which subjects to choose for Grades 10 to 12. My future goal is to become a doctor or to study animal and poultry science.’
Nokwanda Sibisi, a learner from Dr Nembula High, said: ‘The Expo has now motivated me to become a maths teacher.’
Miss A Ngcobo, a Teacher from Dr Nembula High School, said: ‘The Expo was very educational and I am certain learners who attended are far better informed about choosing a line of study and a future career.’