Students who pursue studies in Natural Sciences are not limited to careers in engineering or medicine, but can explore options in industrial chemistry areas such as food manufacturing and pharmaceuticals.
This point was emphasised yesterday when the Science Department of the Barbados Community College hosted its Young Scientists At Work Showcase. Coordinator Akilah Williams said not every student who pursues the science programmes gets to pursue further studies in the medical sciences and therefore have to seek other avenues.
“Sometimes students feel lost when they do not get into the medical programme . . . there is so much else that you can do,” Williams said.
“Many times people think of medicine and engineering and the very traditional areas when students study science but there are many professions that require a science background.”
Therefore, the showcase which featured a variety of careers and projects, was hosted to expose students to different career options.
Williams said the expo, now in its second year, also featured the projects of the final year students, while the seminars hosted professionals in the science arena. The focus of the sessions included cybersecurity, prosthetics and orthotics, container gardening and alternative energy.
“We wanted to give the students a well-rounded glance at what the opportunities are for them out there. It is important to paint that picture for them,” Williams said.
The students’ exhibits included a tea shop where students made tea bags using lemon grass and ginger; they also created capsules and ointments using the same ingredients. There was also an “upcycling” display of used car tyres which were upholstered to create chairs and tables.
They also used wine bottles to create drinking glasses, wine glasses and candle holders.
The showcase also featured a spa with soaps, shampoos, body butters, lipsticks, body mists, nail polishes, and other beauty care products the students made from scratch.
Stephanie Piggott’s group worked on the Le’Monge range of products which are lemon grass and ginger capsules, ointments and tea bags. Piggott said it called for a lot of research on the medicinal properties of the ingredients, as well as testing. She said the capsules were used for digestive tract problems, pale complexion and weak pulse, while the ointment is good for arthritis and ringworm.
Industrial chemistry students made a product line called Senses.
Chelsi Bannister said the products were designed to appeal to the senses through colours, scents and textures. Bannister’s group contributed the Body Bakery products which are designed to look and smell like food. They include cookie soaps, muffin body scrub and cupcake balms.
A full range of cosmetics under the name Tropical Pleasures was also on display.
Nikisha Arthur said her group project showed how the skills they learned can help them to reduce costs. She said they do not have to purchase cosmetic products but can make items from simple products they already have at home.