Science fair returns to Camana Bay

Science fair returns to Camana Bay

It’s time once again for the greatest young scientific minds in the Cayman Islands school system to show off what they’ve learned as the Dr. Bill Hrudey Science Fair returns to the Camana Bay Arts & Recreation Centre on 13 April.

Established in 2007 by the Rotary Club of Grand Cayman Central, the science fair has taken place annually ever since, with the exception of 2020 and 2022 when the COVID-19 pandemic forced its cancellation.

Rotary Central President Paul Arbo said there are several reasons why the club is committed to continuing its sponsorship of the event.

“Rotary Central believes that the encouragement of Cayman’s students to take an interest in the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) disciplines is key to developing well-rounded individuals who will be ready to pursue future employment in the careers of the future,” he said. “That is certainly true of the evolving careers landscape here in Cayman, with a wider range of opportunities being available to students who wish to remain here after graduation.”

The science fair typically attracts 50 to 70 projects involving up to 100 different students, Arbo said, adding that most of the public and private schools on Grand Cayman are represented, and that some homeschooled students and students from Cayman Brac usually also enter each year. All Cayman Islands-based students aged 5 through high school are eligible for entry.

For their projects, students must choose from one of four categories, which include life science; earth science; food and health; or physics, chemistry and computer science. Although there is no specific annual theme for the science fair, this year’s Rotary International theme is “Creating Hope in the World,” and Arbo said there will be a special prize for the project that best reflects that goal.

The projects are judged on a variety of criteria, including presentation, background research, hypothesis, quantitative and qualitative data, analysis, conclusion and their oral presentation and interview with the judges. Cash prizes are awarded to the top three projects, with first prize being CI$1,500.

In addition to Rotary Central, other sponsors of the event include Dart’s Minds Inspired, Consolidated Water, Caribbean Utilities Company and Precision Industries.

The public can view the projects free of charge from 8:30 a.m. until noon on the day of the fair, and Arbo said he would encourage people to attend regardless of whether they have children participating in the event.

“They will be surprised at how much they will learn – even from the youngest of our participants – and will come away from the Science Fair with a great appreciation of what our local students can accomplish and, I suspect, a heightened sense of hope for our future,” he said.

This article was published in the April 2024 print edition of Camana bay Times. 

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