Central Coast Grammar win Science and Engineering Challenge

Newcastle University Science and Engineering Challenge. Image: UoN

Central Coast Grammar School has taken out the 2019 Central Coast Science and Engineering Challenge. The Challenge (SEC) is a nationwide STEM outreach program presented by the University of Newcastle.

Through the SEC, students experience aspects of science and engineering which they would not usually see in their school environment. The Central Coast SEC is coordinated by various Central Coast Rotary Clubs, with this years event held at St Edwards College, East Gosford, from June 25-26. Fourteen high schools took part in this years SEC which is open to students in Years 9 and 10.

The SEC featured eight activities designed to put students STEM knowledge, creativity and problem-solving skills to the test, with each tasks real world implications easy to recognise. Some of the activities students competed in this year included: Confounding Communications, a code based challenge where students were tasked with sending secret messages using fibre optics rods and coloured light pulses; Grasping at Straws, a challenge where students design and operate a bionic hand from everyday materials and where the finished product is scored on its dexterity; and, Helter Skelter Shelter, a challenge where students are tasked to construct two towers from everyday materials with their constructs put to the test under both static and seismic conditions.

Gosford Rotary Club member and 2019 Central Coast SEC Event Organiser, Barry Henwood, said the local SEC had become one of the largest joint Rotary projects in the region, with over 50 volunteers from Rotary Clubs across the Coast coming together to ensure the success of the event. It was an excellent two days and all Rotarians were impressed with how students applied themselves to their challenges, Henwood said.

Central Coast Grammar School (CCGS) and Gorokan High School are this years joint winners with Gorokan taking out day one and CCGS day two.

Brisbane Water Secondary College and St Edwards placed second on day one and two respectively, and Tuggerah Lakes Secondary College and Terrigal High School each placed third. CCGS had the overall better score so will move on to represent the Central Coast region at the next leg of the SEC.

Source: Media release, Jul 11 Barry Henwood, Rotary Club of Gosford Website, Jul 10 University of Newcastle, Science and Engineering Challenge