Jelena Manuel from St Joseph’s School wins third place in national science competition

Similar story: Science students national success.

A year nine student from St Joseph’s School in Northam has won third place in a national science competition. 

Jelena Manuel, a Year 9 student from St Joseph’s School in Northam recently won a national science competition.

Jelena Manuel, a Year 9 student from St Joseph’s School in Northam recently won a national science competition.

Jelena Manuel is part of the school’s Gifted and Talented program, the da Vinci Club, and was encouraged to apply for the competition where she would submit a renewable energy idea for a Fijian medical centre. 

The proposal had to ensure a constant energy supply to keep vital medical supplies refrigerated.

The submission included a seven minute video outlining their possible solution with appropriate scientific theory.

Jelena’s proposal used solar panels on a jetty with recycled fans underwater which used the mechanical energy of the tides to produce the required kilowatts of energy in a 24 hour period.

This would keep the vaccination fridges working at a constant temperature.

It has really made me think about how we can do more to assist others around us

Jelena Manuel

Jelena was initially shortlisted to a group of ten students, from all around Australia and then recently discovered she finished third place in the Bookend Trust competition. 

The competition was a good learning experience, Jelena said. 

“I've really enjoyed researching about renewable energy and issues in a developing country and particularly how I could assist the Fiji community maintain better health conditions through an important vaccination program,” she said.

“It has really made me think about how we can do more to assist others around us.

“I was really fascinated about the issues involved with the project.

I was really fascinated about the issues involved with the project

Jelena Manuel

“When I began investigating the problem and I examined the images and videos of their previous trips to Fiji, it motivated me to look more in depth, to how I could make my proposed idea work effectively and efficiently.”

Mr Mark Gargano, the Year 7 to 12 Curriculum Coordinator from St Joseph’s School, said these competitions are great for students. 

“A project such as this offers a great motivation for students to delve into real world issues within a global community and broaden their horizons and interests, maybe identifying new areas and fresh ideas about tertiary courses and future careers in the areas of science,” said Mr Gargano.