Thursday, May 25th was the annual Take a Girl-Child to Work Day and Minister Naledi Pandor invited three of our Grade 11 Science learners to join her.
Justine Crook, Yusra Sablay and Georgia Smith started at Parliament where they witnessed the signing of an agreement between the Department of Science and Technology, SA Medical Research Council and Novartis to improve access to precision medication in South Africa. Those present included MRC Vice President Professor Jeffrey Mphahlele, Novartis South Africa Country President, Dr Thomas Kowallik and Swiss Ambassador HE Mrs Helene Budliger Artieda.
They then visited the offices of SKA (Square Kilometre Array) to see the Science Processing Unit, the Telescope Operations Unit, a Digital Back End Unit and the Control and Monitoring Unit.
Following lunch, the girls returned to Parliament to witness a Budget Vote presentation.
Yusra added the following comment:
Spending the day with The Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, was eye-opening in more than one aspect. We were able to witness first-hand the correct procedure and protocol that ministers have to follow at formal meetings, the kind of work done at SKA which is different to the aforementioned and then personally the most exciting experience, was to sit in the National Assembly and to see what work is done by politicians, behind all the glamour which is portrayed to the general public. Witnessing people in three different branches of work, opened my eyes to the endless career options which are before me and which I could potentially follow one day. Thank you to Ms Weston, for getting things organised in such a short space of time and to the Department of Science and Technology for inviting us.
Justine said: Naledi Pandor was kind and eloquent. The visit to the SKA offices in Pinelands was fascinating, particularly as I am interested in choosing astronomy as a career.