Science & The Sea – PepsiCo Challenge Science at NMCI

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PepsiCo “Challenge Science” hosted by the National Maritime College of Ireland (NMCI) involved 11 Students  Lt Aonghus ONeachtain on the bridge simulator at the NMCI60 6th class students in two days of interactive science workshops and experiments.

Students from Ringaskiddy Lower Harbout N.S., Scoil Cjill Ruadhain, Scoil Inse Ratha, St John’s Boys N.S, and St John’s Girls N.S. worked hard to unlock the secrets of forensic science and chemical energy, and to explore a century of great scientific discoveries.

PepsiCo volunteers challenged the students to create lava lamps powered by chemical energy and to undertake forensic analysis to determine the identity of the villain at the scene of a crime. 16 volunteers from PepsiCo: Richard Flynn, Noleen Fleming, Denise Coffey, Alison Walsh, Elizabeth Hobbs, Jean White, Sharon Rothwell, Xian Quinlou, Nuala O’Leary, Myles O’Donnell, Brenda Morrissey, Kevin McCarthy, Amandine Maulicci, Patrick Maher and Cliona Kelliher were really impressed by the students who tackled the series of fast-paced, science-themed activities with great enthusiasm.

Each of the volunteers shared with the students their experience of work in the fields of science, technology and engineering and all of the accompanying teachers were delighted to see their wards making connections between the in-classroom work in subjects like maths and environmental studies to exciting careers, not least those of the mariners enjoying their courses at NMCI as well as the ‘landlubbers’ working acorss a whole range of functions in PepsiCo. 

Sinead Brady, Organisation Development and Communications Manager at PepsiCo said: “supporting Challenge Science aligns really well with PepsiCo’s policy of promoting science in schools. This initiative is hugely valuable in developing students’ interest in science in the push towards a knowledge-based economy. It also gives our employees an opportunity to contribute to education locally.”

All of the staff at the National Maritime College were incredibly welcoming and we are grateful to all involved for their work in hosting students from all the local schools, ensuring each one enjoyed refreshments (very important after a series of science workshops!) and a realy comprehensive introduction to the college. There was a great deal to see and learn including a stomach-challenging experience on the “bridge simulator” as Lt. Aonghus O’Neachtain navigated Sydney harbour, and, a visit to the environmental pool, in which cadets and seafarers train for sea disaster rescues. To close each day in style the PepsiCo volunteers presented the students with their Junior Achievement Certificates of Achievement and wished them well in their studies. 

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