Science and Careers: Guest Speakers

When a midwife turns up with a Police Inspector and retired chemical scientist, students are rightly flummoxed for the reason to visit year 9. A critical year in school, when decisions are made which may determine future careers. But for all our students we can safely say, science will feature heavily. As a core subject all our students will study two GCSEs in science, made up of all the three sciences in equal proportions; Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Their final grades will be an average of scores across the three subjects.

Some of our students already have an idea that science may be key to their future, so should consider opted to take Triple Science. They will study Biology, Chemistry and Physics as distinct GCSEs and receive a separate grade for each one. This path is helpful if they are considering studying A levels, post 16.

In an attempt to get our year 9 students to think about careers, we asked our guests to talk about how science has influenced their own careers and that of people who assist their present or former career.

Mr Rodney Hailwood retired from the chemical industry, working on disinfectants, soaps, perfumery and rising to trouble shooting management, but actually started in nursing: science applied to every day needs.

Mrs Sarah Johnson lecturer and a midwife and a nurse, specialising in Infant Feeding and Physical Activity: social science to life.

Mr Andrew Moore Police Inspector, presently working with the College of Policing spent time working with the mounted police, helicopters, specialising in riot squads and public disorder: science in action.

Rodney now in his 70's spoke about how chemicals have been made and since banned and we considered the sustainability and ethical issues of manufacture being sent abroad. Sarah even had the students moving around and aghast at the volume of water needed to make formula milk. The natural benefits of breast feeding and massive environmental benefits as well as economic benefits were discussed. The cycle of life and being to preserve life and the importance of nursing was highlighted. Andrew explained how research scientists enable his team to survive in riots due to their research and use of materials and chemicals to protect those who protect us. 

Rodney went on to lead the Sixth Form lunch time lecture ‘Sustainability Unpacked’. Discussing the contentious issue of Palm oil, explaining the hype is not always the reality and how agriculture needs to look at maximum yields of plant based oils to prevent further deforestation.

A big thank you to all three for taking the time to visit, all our pupils benefitted hugely from their experiences.