Minister Pandor launches Space Science Outreach at Walter Sisulu University

BY TAI CHISHAKWE - OCTOBER 10, 2014

Science and Technology Minister, Naledi Pandor, is expected to deliver a keynote address at the Walter Sisulu University (WSU). The Minister will be launching the Space Science Outreach and Awareness Open Day Programme on Saturday 11 October under the theme 'Space: Guiding Your Way'.

She’ll be accompanied by Eastern Cape MEC for Education, Mandla Makupula.

At the launch will be Africa’s first black person expected to orbit space.

Mandla Maseko (26), who guaranteed himself one of only 23 seats in the Lynx Mark II Shuttle next year after winning the Axe Apollo Space Academy competition last year, is expected to interact with hundreds of WSU students as well as high schools learners from the King Sabatha Dalindyebo Local Municipality region during the launch of the Space Science Outreach and Awareness Open Day Programme at WSU’s Zamakulungisa Site in Mthatha.

“The day promises to be educational, entertaining and informative with a packed interactive programme set to capture the learners’ imaginations,” the university said in a statement.

Leaners will enjoy front row seats to a live science and chemistry show; visit exhibitions; listen to scientific lectures, as well as participate in activities like telescope and rocket making and launching, watching a simulation of a real life satellite; and visiting a mobile planetarium.

“The aim of the programme is to create awareness of the role of space science and technology in people’s lives, and also to attract learners into careers in space science, engineering and technology.”

The event is a joint initiative between the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the National Research Foundation together with the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA).

Photo caption: SPACE GUIDING YOUR WAY... Science and Technology Minister, Naledi Pandor, is expected to deliver a keynote address at the Walter Sisulu University (WSU). The event is aimed at inspiring young South Africans on the role of space science and technology in people’s lives. Image NASA.