The 2012 HIP2B² 3M Innovation Challenge journey that started in May in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg finally came to an end on Thursday, 18 October, when Nhlakanipho Shezi and Thabani Dlamini from Uxholophambili High School earned the title of “South Africa’s Young Innovators of the Year 2012″.
Earlier in the year the learners were told to propose a solution to a real problem that affected them, their family or their community. Thabani and Nhlakanipho came up with a ‘pot washer’ to solve the problem of the calluses on their mothers’ hands, developed from frequent scrubbing of their family potjie pots.
Together with the other finalists they presented their idea in front of an audience that included newly appointed Minister of Science and Technology Derek Hanekom after a week of career exposure and personal development with industry specialists and mentors.
Besides getting first-hand exposure to science and engineering related careers within the real-life work environment of the 3M factory and mixing with other like-minded youth, the finalists received personalised guidance and mentoring at Idea 2 Product (i2p™) at Vaal University of Technology.
The winning team received:
- A R10 000 cheque from Huge Telecom for science equipment for their school as well as additional prizes
Each member of the winning team received:
- A Laptop from HIP2B²
- An iPad sponsored by TIA
- A scholarship to attend the University of George Entrepreneurship programme at UJ for 3 weeks in December
- A Blackberry phone sponsored by the Stuart Ntlathi Science, Engineering & Technology Institute, and
- An all-expenses paid weekend at the Innovation Indaba
The Innovation Challenge comes back again next year; do not forget to enter when the time comes.
“Activating the innovator in today’s youth will prepare them for the job market and ensure the growth of our economy, which can only be led by technological development.” – Serita Esselaar, 3M Manager Corporate Services
(L-R) Back row – Minister Derek Hanekom; HIP2B² GM Cathryn Treasure; winner Thabani Dlamini (17); Len Moult, Managing Director for 3M SA; winner Nhlakanipho Shezi (17);
Front row – teacher at Uxolophambili High school, Ms Thando Makhathini; Serita Esselaar, 3M Manager Corporate Services.
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