Change the world

04/06/2024

The Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre (GMMDC) at Nelson Mandela University recently hosted a successful inaugural two-day provincial Science Technology Engineering Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) education seminar at Kingswood College in Makhanda.

This strategic event was organized in partnership with the Independent Schools Association of Southern Africa (ISASA). The primary goal of the seminar was to advance trans-disciplinary teaching and learning strategies within schools, addressing critical STEM education challenges which inhibits sustainable development and economic growth opportunities for the youth of the Eastern Cape Province (ECP).
 
Professor Werner Olivier, Director of the GMMDC, underscored the urgent necessity to confront obstacles in STEM education, including teaching skills deficits and limited access to digital learning materials within schools. "We must facilitate more networking opportunities for educators across diverse school environments for educators to showcase and share innovative 21st-century teaching practices and resources," he emphasized.
 
With dedicated support from national and international stakeholders in STEM education, the inaugural seminar attracted over 140 enthusiastic in-service Mathematics and Science educators from across the Eastern Cape Province (ECP). Notably, more than sixty of these attendees received sponsorship from the Eastern Cape Department of Education (ECDE). The event fostered valuable networking among educators from both private and under-resourced public schools, spotlighting best teaching practices and innovative approaches linking Mathematics and Science education to real-world problem-solving and career pathways in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) era.
 
Featuring a diverse array of STEAM education presentations, demonstrations, and hands-on workshops, the seminar directly engaged educators with practical tools to inspire interest in Mathematics and Science classrooms. Esteemed national and international STEAM education experts, including Dr Kristof Fenyvesi from the Finnish Institute of Educational Research at the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, participated as presenters. The opening session also welcomed representatives from the Department of Basic Education (DBE), affirming the initiative's positive impact on addressing Mathematics education challenges in the ECP.
 
Ms. Mariette Visser, Regional Director South-East of ISASA and co-organizer, lauded the seminar's success, affirming its role as a vital platform to collectively explore solutions to the growing STEM education and skills development needs in the province.
 
The GMMDC aims to establish the Provincial STEAM Education Seminar as a prestigious annual engagement event of the Science Faculty at Nelson Mandela University, dedicated to fostering sustainable STEM skills development in Eastern Cape Province schools.
 
 
For further information, please contact:
Prof Werner Olivier
Director: Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre
Nelson Mandela University
0845102582
Werner.olivier2@mandela.ac.za 
 
About Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre (GMMDC):
The Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre (GMMDC) is a pioneering Engagement Centre within Science Faculty of the Nelson Mandela University dedicated to advancing Mathematics & STEAM education and skills development in South Africa and beyond. Through innovative programmes, resources, research initiatives, and collaborative partnerships, GMMDC strives to empower school educators and students to excel in the ever-evolving landscape of STEM education (Home - Govan Mbeki Mathematics Development Centre (mandela.ac.za ).
 

Contact information
Prof Werner Olivier
Director of GMMDC
Tel: 27 41 504 4743
gmmdc@mandela.ac.za