College of Science, Engineering & Technology

Galaxy Guardians and I-SET go international

The super Galaxy Guardians, back from left: Lindsay Olivier, Saadique Hendricks, Mbuso Mpanza and Me-Chandré de Bruyn; front from left: Dyllann Goeieman, Li-Yono van Wyk and Thurlo Maritz

Meet the Galaxy Guardians Robotics team from Carnarvon High School! The learners, whose ages range from 15 to 17, will be travelling to Montevideo, Uruguay, next week to proudly represent South Africa at the Open Robotics Championships!

Many years ago, Inspired towards Science, Engineering and Technology (I-SET), a community engagement flagship project of Unisa’s College of Science, Engineering and Technology (CSET), was invited to present robotics workshops during National Science Week. For a week, the I-SET Robotics Buddies would travel along dust roads and visit a different school each day.

But that was not enough. The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) in collaboration with I-SET had a plan! One of the I-SET Buddies, Odwa Magabuko, was given an internship to promote robotics in the Northern Cape. He still travels to visit schools to coach and mentor robotics. Every day of the week is another school. And so robotics teams formed and developed at nine schools in the area. Magabuko is still there!

In November 2018, an I-SET delegation travelled to Carnarvon High School to host the very first ever FIRST LEGO League (FLL) robotics competition in the Northern Cape. The Galaxy Guardians won, and were invited to participate in the South African National Competition from 30 November to 1 December 2018 at the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre in Johannesburg. As winners of the Project Innovative Solution Award, their next competition is international. Watch this space!

Li-Yono van Wyk, Lindsey Olivier, Dyllann Goeieman, Thurlo Maritz, Mbuso Mpanza, Saadique Hendriks, Shannon Vermeulen (team mentor) and Me-Chandré de Bruyn at the national finals

* By Patricia Gouws, Senior Lecturer, Department of Information Systems

Publish date: 2019/05/24