Saint Ignatius College Geelong

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    National Youth Science Forum

    Article by Sophie Skuza

    National Youth Science Forum

    Between the 9th and 20th of January this year, I attended the National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) Year 12 Program, Session B in Brisbane.

    NYSF is a non-profit organisation that runs a number of science programs, including the NYSF Year 12 Program which runs in January each year. This is a 12-day residential program for students interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), which aims to give students insights into the variety of study and career opportunities available across STEM fields. 

    During the program, participants stay on campus at a host university, that being either the Australian National University or the University of Queensland. 

    As I attended the Brisbane session, I stayed at Emmanuel College at the University of Queensland.

    The program was jam-packed with different activities, including lab and site visits, lectures and workshops. These visits and lectures are done mostly with your interest group, although some are elective visits. There are 7 interest groups, those being biology, chemistry, physics, medicine, computer science, earth science and engineering. Being in the biology interest group, I visited the Institute for Molecular Biosciences, the Biology facilities at Griffith university and the Moreton Bay Research Station on North Stradbroke Island.  

    Networking is another major aspect of the program and in addition to the networking with professionals during lab visits and lectures, there were semi-formal occasions specifically for networking, including a Science Dinner held at the Brisbane City Hall, at which around 300 people including STEM professionals attended.

    There were 200 other students with me on session, so socialising is another large part of program. Everyone was so friendly and kind, and I have made so many new friendships and I still talk to lots of people every day. 

    The program was such an amazing experience, and I have gotten so much from it including more prospects for further study and my career, many new friends, contacts with professionals and especially an increased sense of confidence.

    Any students who are currently in Year 11 and will move on to Year 12 next year and are interested in science, technology, engineering and math can and should apply to attend NYSF in 2020 and beyond. There are places for nearly 600 students across three sessions in 2020. Applications for the program are taken online through the NYSF database -

    All information you need is here, including fee information. Applications open on 1 March and close 31 May!

    Sophie Skuza

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