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Minister Pandor to deliver keynote address at the National Science Olympiad awards

19th June 2015


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The Minister of Science and Technology, Ms Naledi Pandor, will deliver the keynote address at the 51st National Science Olympiad awards evening taking place on 2 July 2015 at the Emperors Palace, Kempton Park in Gauteng.

The awards ceremony will honour South Africa’s top young science learners in 2015 in various categories such as Top National Winners for Life Sciences and Physical Sciences, Top Girl Learners, Top Learners from Previously Disadvantaged schools and Top Learners from Southern African Development Community (SADC) schools. The South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA) will present awards to these top achievers.


Speaking at the awards ceremony last year, Minister Pandor said the Olympiad was more than a science and biology exam competition. “It’s the jewel in the crown of our Youth into Science strategy, which is all about identifying and nurturing talent.
“The Olympiad also identifies talent. It identifies talent that teachers have nurtured in schools across the length and breadth of the country,” she added.
The awards are one of SAASTA’s flagship projects. Since 2005, the 51-year-old project has offered learners in grades 10-12 an exciting opportunity to compete in science with fellow learners from SADC countries such as Lesotho, Zimbabwe and Namibia.

The competition comprises of an annual examination in science (Physical and Life Sciences), top learners and schools stand a chance to win exciting prizes. The top national performers also stand a chance to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the London International Youth Science Forum and the Australian National Youth Science Forum.
The Olympiad comprises two papers/streams: Physical Science (Physics and Chemistry) and Life Science. Learners can choose to write either the Physical Science or Life Science papers.
The main aim of the competition is to identify talent, to encourage excellence in science education and to stimulate interest in the sciences. It seeks to inspire young people to consider careers in science and technology.
It was started in 1964, initially for grade 12 learners with the objective of promoting Physical Science. Over the years, participation and performance in the National Science Olympiad has increased significantly from about 700 learners in 1967 to more than 30,000 in 2014.
Date: Thursday 02 July 2015
Time: 18:00 for 18:30
Venue: Emperors Palace, Senate Ballroom, 64 Jones Street, Kempton Park, Gauteng
Dress: Traditional/Semi-Formal/Formal
RSVP: No later than Friday 26 June 2015 (16:00) – email
Issued by:
Mr Zamuxolo Matiwana
Media Coordinator at SAASTA
Telephone number 012 392 9319
About the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA)
SAASTA is a business unit of the National Research Foundation (NRF) with the mandate to advance public awareness, appreciation and engagement of science, engineering and technology in South Africa.
SAASTA’s contribution to the NRF’s vision is to grow the pool of quality learners today who will become the scientists and innovators of tomorrow.
It aims to be the leading Science advancement agency in the country by promoting and communicating the value and impact of Science, Technology and Innovation in a dynamic knowledge economy. It also intends to contribute significantly towards building a Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) human resource base.



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