Posted on Feb 07, 2017
Emily attended the Rotary National Youth Science Forum at Canberra’s Australian National University during January.
Students were housed at ANU’s Burgmann College and from there attended functions, lectures and forums throughout the University and at other Scientific Institutions in the region.
The 196 students were each assigned a buddy to lookout-for and each was assigned to a floor group that reflected the location of their accommodation.
Each floor group was assigned a supervisor chosen from students from previous years.
The supervisor was known as a staff-y.
Emily was pleased that there were a large number of girls present; there were six in her floor group compared to two in the physics class at Oberon.
Emily’s favourite ‘awesome’ moment was to meet Professor Brian Schmidt who was awarded the Nobel Prize for physics in 2011 for the discovery of the accelerating expansion of the Universe through observations of distant supernovae (and shared with Saul Perlmutter and Adam G. Riess.)
This has sparked her interest to study physics and astrophysics in the future at either Monash University or Swinburne University.
Their studies included classes on wave theory (light and lasers, sound and gravity) and playing with them in the laboratory.
They also attended lectures on the theory and practice of Critical Thinking and Entrepreneurship.
They visited the CSIRO Tidbinbilla Deep Tracking Station also known as the Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex.
Here five active radio telescopes provide data for the CSIRO and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory supporting satellites and space vehicles.
At busy times they farm out work to the Parkes Telescope.
There are a few decommissioned telescopes that have been either disconnected or just turned-off.
The telescopes are used by astronomers from Australia and around the world either with connecting satellites or not, to aid their research in astrophysics.
Emily visited Questacon — the National Science and Technology Centre — where the exhibitions and activities are aimed mostly to students — and the Shine Dome, the home of the Australian Academy of Science.
Canberra has many tourist attractions and the students were ushered through many:
The National Gallery,
The National Museum of Australia,
The Royal Australian Mint
The Telstra Tower.
Emily thanked the Club for the opportunity to attend the NYSF on behalf of herself, her school and the Club.
What did Emily learn?
  • Be curious
  • Never choose the easy option
  • Think critically
  • Know that Belief is not Knowledge
  • Know that you will fail
  • Do not give up when you fail
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