SA schools compete to win R180 000 in STEM equipment

  • Ten schools from across South Africa have teams competing in Samsung’s Solve for Tomorrow competition.
  • The competition will award R100 000 in STEM equipment to the winning school that can provide working prototype solutions to solve a societal problem.
  • Final decisions will be made on 3rd October when the schools will present prototypes to judges.

The Samsung Solve for Tomorrow Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) competition is coming to its conclusion as now ten schools across the country are preparing teams to present their final prototypes.

During the third phase of the competition, students from these institutions must now create a device or technology to solve the various societal challenges the learners identified in their respective communities.

This leg of the competition is running until the end of September 2023, when the finalists will present their prototypes to a panel of judges on 3rd October.

The winning school will get a prize of R100 000 worth of STEM equipment, while the second and third positions will get R50 000 and R30 000 worth of STEM equipment for their schools respectively.

In addition to the main prizes, each of the learners in the top three teams will be rewarded with a Samsung device, according to the South African arm of the smartphone manufacturer. The company did not mention which device or what the cost will be.

The ten schools can be found nationwide, including Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Free State, Kwazulu-Natal, and Limpopo.

Before the teams began building their prototypes, Samsung South Africa welcomed students from the 10 schools to take part in a series of workshops surrounding the design process.

These workshops aimed to boost students’ creative and critical thinking skills, as well as learning and practicing the design thinking process, including preparing for interviews, brainstorming and making paper prototypes.

In a press release sent to Hypertext, Samsung says that the Solve for Tomorrow project, launched in January, was designed to increase interest and proficiency in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) among grade 10 and 11 learners from underserved communities.

In terms of what prototypes they will present to the judges, the different teams have come up with solutions for their communities including an ambitious plan for better roads using sustainable materials, basic needs during load-shedding, alternative solutions for water and electricity, and clean water to name a few.

“As the learners enter this critical stage of the competition, we are getting excited and looking forward to seeing all the solutions they come up with,” said Hlubi Shivanda, Director for Business Operations, Innovation and Corporate Affairs at Samsung.

“This bodes well for the future of our country as the youngsters are killing the proverbial two birds with one stone by learning and also improving or solving problems in their communities.”

[Image – Provided]


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