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Gifted and Talented Children Attend Engineering Day

In early December, a group of students in Year 8 visited Cambridge for an introduction to ‘The Science of Flight’. The event was organised between Waveney Gifted and Talented Partnership, the Cambridge Engineering Department, and St John’s College.

 The children arrived at St John’s in the morning, where they were launched straight into a talk on the various theories about how aeroplanes and gliders work. The talk was delivered by Eva Maria-Hempe, a final-year PhD student. The science to which the students were exposed would have baffled many A-level Physics candidates, and even undergraduates, but all listened intently. They were able to grasp the basic theories of flight, which they could put into use later in the day. The talk also gave a sense of the mystery of science, demonstrating that even something we now take for granted is not fully understood.

 In the afternoon, the students had the opportunity to apply what they had learned in a glider-building activity at the Department of Engineering. Small teams were given the materials required to build model gliders, which were then tested and judged by Cambridge undergraduates and academics.

 The students left Cambridge enthusiastic about engineering, the science behind modern technology, and the challenging questions it poses. Hopefully some will return to Cambridge in a few years time on their way to tackling some of these questions!

 Do you work with young people? If you would be interested in visiting St John’s, or in having the Schools Liaison Officer visit you, please get in touch: slo@joh.cam.ac.uk, 01223339361.