Royal Society honours Wynberg Scientists

A special assembly was held on Monday afternoon to recognise the wonderful achievements of six of our Matric Physical Sciences students who won prizes for their entries to the Royal Society’s Essay writing competition.


Royal Society Honours Wynberg Scientists

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The prestigious competition is held each year and invites high school students to submit scientific essays in response to one of three topics on offer. This year’s topics were: ‘The doping debate‘, ‘The sustainability of the South African coastline‘ and ‘A world without bees‘. Anna Jacobs won first prize of R2000 for her essay on ‘The doping debate‘ and her essay was also judged as one of the top two essays in the entire competition. Jessica Hawkridge was awarded a merit prize of R250 for her essay which dealt with the same topic. In the category ‘The sustainability of the South African coastline‘, Grace Steel was placed in first position, also winning R2000. Lauren Mitchell won the second prize for this category, winning herself R1250. Finally for the topic ‘A world without bees‘ Lindsay Powell’s essay won her second position, and Lauren Gildenhuys earned a merit prize for her submission. As one can see, Wynberg cleaned up!

The adjudicators were ‘blown away’ the excellent standard observed in the essays of Wynberg’s students. In the entire history of the competition this is the highest number of prizewinners belonging to one school – six of the fifteen winners came from Wynberg – and we are phenomenally proud of this amazing achievement!

As such Wynberg Girls’ has been awarded the Royal Society of South Africa/Claude Leon Foundation 2013 Trophy for producing six of the top essays in the competition. Professor Jill Farrant,who is a professor of molecular and cell biology at the University of Cape Town, attended our assembly in order to hand over the prizes to our award-winners and speak briefly on her internationally-recognised work on ‘resurrection plants’, a field in which she is a leading researcher. She was the winner of the 2012 L’Oréal-UNESCO Award For Women in Science, and is currently focusing her work on the possibilities of drought resistant crop plants.Her talk was very interesting entertaining, and we thank her for her contribution to the assembly.

Once again, a big well done to our girls for their hard work and fantastic achievements, and to Mr Bodenstein and Ms Moerat who are their teachers!