Curious mind a champ in the making

Peter SweeneyGeraldton Guardian
Award-winning Charlotte McGowan.
Camera IconAward-winning Charlotte McGowan.

She goes to a Champion school and she’s a champion in the making.

Charlotte McGowan recently returned from Canberra after the first sitting of the Australian National Uni-versity Curious Minds Program, designed to spark the interest of clever girls.

Outstanding results in a national science test secured the Champion Bay Senior High School Year 9 student a place in the prestigious program.

The program is offered yearly to 50 students from regional and under-represented areas.

Students are selected based on their performance in key science, mathematics and algorithmic thinking competitions.

Charlotte, pictured, achieved a high distinction in the Big Science Competition earlier this year but was “surprised and pleased” at where she ended up.

“We sit lots of these types of tests and I thought that it was just another one,” she said.

The first of two week-long trips to the national capital saw Charlotte matched with a young female STEM professional, who will mentor her via Skype every three weeks for the next six months.

They will present a research project at the second academic camp in the ACT during winter.

“I like the sound of most sciences and I am interested in maths because there is always something to challenge you,” she said.

“I don’t really know what I want to do when I grow up . . . but I like taking opportunities like this.”

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