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Fun and games with SANRAL at Scifest Africa

Mar 13, 2018
Fun and games with SANRAL at Scifest Africa

Learners from various schools around the Eastern Cape are visiting SANRAL’s exhibition at this year’s SciFest Africa 2018, a national science festival currently underway in Grahamstown.

The South African National Roads Agency SOC Ltd (SANRAL) is exhibiting at this year’s SciFest, making information available about civil engineering, highlighting scholarship and bursary opportunities that are available to learners in primary and high schools and explaining the importance of building good roads, the different road signs available and what line markings are.

“There has been an influx of learners enquiring about the scholarships and bursary programmes. The younger learners are also very excited about what makes line markers glitter and what civil engineering is about” said SANRAL marketing and communications representative Michelle Ah Shene.

Likhona Duba, an11-year-old grade six learner at Sinako Lower High Primary School said he enjoyed the experiments.

“I really liked learning more about road signs and knowing the difference between permanent and temporary ones,” Duba said.

Paul Papiso a teacher at Sinako Lower High Primary School said learning about road signs is part of the natural science and technology subject at school.

“What they have learned from the SANRAL team is related to what we teach at school,” Papiso said.

Aviwe Nzema, a 16-year-old from Khulani Commercial School in East London, would like to be a pilot or civil engineer someday. “I love doing things for my community and think building bridges and roads so that people will have quicker access to clinics or schools is a good way of helping the community,” said Nzema.

Sakhile Ndaba, an 18-year-old matric learner at Butterworth High School said it was his first time visiting the SciFest. “I believe what we learn at the SciFest will help us with our school work. I would like to be a civil engineer like my brother who inspires me.” Ndaba said.

Aphiwe Nogqala, 18, a matric learner at Butterworth High School wants to follow in his aunt’s footsteps who is a civil engineer based in Cape Town. “There will always be a need to build roads to make trips shorter between towns and cities. Building better and safer roads can reduce road accidents,” said Nogqala.

SciFest Africa is an annual national science festival which was established in 1996 to promote public awareness, understanding and appreciation of science, technology and innovation in South Africa.

Learners can apply for the SANRAL scholarship programme which supports academically deserving applicants in grades 10 to 12. The minimum requirements are: an overall average of 75% with subject choices that include maths, physical science and English. For further information on the bursary and scholarship programme visit www.nra.co.za

Approximately 122 students at tertiary institutions are pursuing their academic goals with the support of SANRAL bursaries and about 196 high school learners have received scholarships,” Ah Shene concluded.

Image: ASPIRING CIVIL ENGINEERS: Butterworth High School learners Aphiwe Nogqala (centre) and Sakhile Ndaba try to build a brick laying puzzle, while Dirantsho Daniels from Eastern Cape Midlands College in Uitenhage shows them an image of the end result on her cellphone. This and other activities formed part of SANRAL’s exhibition at SciFest Africa 2018 in Grahamstown.