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3rd Annual CSF Workshop

The Third Annual Caribbean Science Foundation Workshop was held in Georgetown, Guyana on December 2-3, 2013 in collaboration with the Ministry of Education of Guyana and the Caribbean Diaspora for Science Technology and Innovation (CADSTI).

Invitation to 2013 Annual CADSTI-CFS

The workshop featured:

  • Career options in the STEM disciplines
  • How to network with the Diaspora
  • Science & technology entrepreneurship in the Region
  • Science and technology policy development examples for small island states
  • Offerings of teacher training in the STEM disciplines
  • Inquiry and project-based learning methods in STEM
  • CSF education reform initiatives: Student Program for Innovation in Science and Engineering (SPISE) and the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge
  • Plans for launch of the CSF Science Engineering and Entrepreneurship Development (SEED) fund
  • Posters covering scientific research in the Caribbean
  • How you can become involved in supporting the work and the projects of the CSF in your country
  • Opportunities for providing expert consulting services in science and engineering, and science and technology policy/planning to corporations and Governments in the Region
  • Winners of the CSF Distinguished Service Awards

Register online at
http://cadsti.org/conference_registration/
or Print out the paper registration form at
http://cadsti.org/files/2013-CSF-Workshop-Registration-Form.pdf
Download the draft agenda from
http://cadsti.org/files/2013-CSF-Workshop-Draft-Agenda.pdf
Book your hotel at the conference venue
(http://www.grandcoastal.com/)
or explore alternative hotels in Georgetown at
http://cadsti.org/

For more information about the CSF and CADSTI you may visit:
 http://caribbeanscience.org or
 http://cadsti.org
or contact Prof. Cardinal Warde at warde.csf@gmail.com.

5Cs’ Donneil Cain Delivers STEM Talk

Credit: Sagicor Visionaries Challenge

Credit: Sagicor Visionaries Challenge

Donneil Cain, Resource Economist at the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (5Cs), delivered a well-received Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) Talk on behalf of Executive Director Dr. Kenrick Leslie, CBE at this week’s staging of the Belize-leg of the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge (SVC).

The Challenge is a partnership between the Caribbean Science Foundation (CSF), Sagicor and the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) that seeks to encourage secondary school students across the region to identify challenges facing their respective schools or communities and develop effective, innovative and sustainable STEM-based solutions.

Bishop Martin High won the contest outpacing 21 other teams from 16 schools. Their project dubbed ‘Coconuts for Life’ is a 20 year multi-pronged plan that includes growing a coconut orchard and creating an ecological park on the school grounds. Yorker Ecological Educational Park for Belizean Biodiversity by Edward P. Yorke High School placed second. Peruse these and other projects here.

Mr. Cain challenged  the students to go beyond the competition and become pioneers in their respective fields. “I beg you to dream big and no matter how old you get, continue to dream big. Beyond dreaming, think critically and be creative. Look around you for issues that must be solved and in doing so you will aid your communities to become sustainable.” In other words, “it is your duty to help chart the way for the efficient uses of our limited resources to meet our needs, while preserving our natural environment,” said Mr. Cain.

He urged educators to do more to enable the region’s young people to unlock their inventive and critical thinking skills to thrive. He also called for new approaches ‘to harness the talents and the ingeniousness of our youths […] and encourage critical, logical and creative thinking.”

Mr. Cain encouraged the budding innovators to consider STEM career options. He cited computer science , chemistry, civil engineering, mathematics, astrophysics, information science, robotics, statistics, architecture, bio-chemistry, electronics as some examples.

Bishop Martin High with their winning project "Coconut 4 Life".

Bishop Martin High with their winning project “Coconuts 4 Life”.

Four of the Challenge’s eleven judges are members of the 5Cs team: Ottis Joslyn, Earl Green, Tyrone Hall and Sharon Lindo. Here are some examples of how we have used STEM  in  climate change adaptation efforts:

  1. Retrofitting a Community Centre – St. Lucia
  2. Climate Modeling – Regional
  3. CO2 Measurement – Regional and Global
  4. Desalination (SWRO plants) – St. Lucia, Grenada, Caye Caulker
  5. Renewable Energy – Bio-Mass, Solar, Hydro, Wind – Regional
  6. Econometric Modeling – Regional
  7. Hazard mapping – Regional

Learn more about the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge. See how we’re working to make the Caribbean more climate resilient by perusing The Implementation Plan for “Delivering transformational change 2011-21″.

UPDATE: Bishop Martin High School won the top prize in the regional science and technology competition, beating 11 other schools to claim a prize of US$5, 000. Second place went to Jamaica’s Wolmer’s Boys School for their project ‘Electro-light, Making Your Electricity Bill Lighter’.  They won US$3 000, while third was Naparima Girls College in Trinidad and Tobago, whose project ‘So What Is The Farmer In Your Neighbourhood’ gained them US$1 000.

Major Science & Innovation Contests for Caribbean Students

Applications are now open for the 2013 Student Programme for Innovation in Science and Engineering (SPISE) and Sagicor Visionaries Challenge. The Caribbean Science Foundation (CSF), which is leading both initiatives, says both programmes are aimed at high school students across the region. CSF says SPISE “is a unique opportunity for students with strong interest in pursuing careers in science and engineering to spend four weeks of total immersion in STEM in Barbados this summer”. The all expense paid programme is open to applicants who will be at least 16 years of age but less than 18 years of age on July 1, 2013, and have completed CXC exams or equivalent in math and science subjects.  The 2013 programme will run from July 20 to August 17, 2013, and will be held at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Cave Hill campus in Barbados, with UWI and the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) providing critical resources and support. Applicants are expected to submit all required documents by April 22. You may learn more about the programme and how to apply here.

Entries for the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge are due on February 12, 2013. The inaugural poster and problem-solving competition is open to high school students in 12 Caribbean Countries – Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad & Tobago. Entrants will compete in teams and propose solutions to a problem in their school or community using science and technology. The champion teams will be awarded both national and regional prizes.  Learn more about the SVC application process here

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