TWO ACT college students have won a flight over Antarctica next year, chosen for their essays on how they think visiting the frozen continent could help them make the world a better place.
The competition was run by the Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition (ANARE) club of Canberra, who wanted to give two worthy students the opportunity to experience the world’s last natural pristine wilderness.
Year 12 Gungahlin student and aspiring engineer Naomi Leszczynska wrote a historical perspective on Hubert Wilkins, an Australian explorer who was among the first to ever fly over the polar regions.
“He was an Australian explorer, engineer and he helped progress aviation,” says Naomi.
“He was my inspiration for the essay.”
Fascinated by the link between aeronautics and engineering, Naomi says she hopes the trip will help to develop both herself and her skills in science.
“I love science and it’s one of my dreams to spend a season working in Antarctica,” she says.
“I really believe engineering is the way to progress our civilization to a more harmonic relationship with nature.”
Year 12 Hawker College student Toby Davis was also chosen for the flight for his thoughtful essay on fixing the damage that’s been inflicted on the frozen continent.
“I’m currently studying to be a scientist and going to uni next year and I thought this would be an amazing opportunity,” he said.
“I’m looking to go into physics. I’d love to work with engineers to help design technology from a physics perspective and I’m hoping that by being a scientist I can develop new technology to help fix the damage that’s been caused to Antarctica.”
Also a passionate artist, Toby says he wants to share the story of Antarctica through sketches.
“I’d love to try to represent Antarctica in art and share it’s story in a way people respond to,” he said.
Convenor of the ANARE Club Canberra Malcolm Robertson said he was “delighted” by the response to the competition and wished the club could have funded another ten seats.
“The entries were uniformly strong with students showing a deep commitment to environmental issues, a sound understanding of the science behind climate change and a determination to make a difference,” said Mr Robertson.
“Naomi’s winning entry was creatively written displaying passion and commitment about the natural world, while Toby’s spoke from the heart about climate change and using his artistic talents to tell of Antarctica’s pain.
“Both will be marvellous ambassadors for Canberra’s colleges and our club.”
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