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Auckland student, Haydn Luckman, wins top award

Auckland student, Haydn Luckman, wins top award

Announcement from the Royal Society of New Zealand

Haydn Luckman, a second-year student at the University of Auckland Engineering School (formerly Auckland Grammar School), was presented with a Gold CREST award by Dr Helen Anderson, Chief Executive of the Ministry of Research, Science and Technology, on Friday morning (21 May) at a "Chatshop" celebrating promising young New Zealanders. CREST means 'Creativity in Science and Technology'; it is a national awards programme for student (years 7-13 run by the Royal Society of New Zealand.

Haydn spent two years developing a heat exchange unit to extract waste heat from shower effluent. Winner of the 2002 Genesis Energy National Science and Technology Fair, he attended both the Beijing Youth Science Creation Competition and the London International Youth Science Forum.

Haydn says that the CREST awards "helped me to foster an enquiring mind and passion for knowledge" and without them he would never "have got hooked on science and technology ­ it's as simple as that."

He is also convinced that an interest in science has to be fostered at an early age. "Time and time again I talk to science students like myself who have got hooked on science at an early age and it is this that has led them to study it at university." But Haydn is emphatic that the right messages are not getting through to primary and secondary students who desperately need information regarding careers in science and technology in time for them to make crucial decisions.

"I cannot stress this point enough-there is a definite break in the chain of information, somewhere between the secondary and tertiary levels. When I was at school, the closest anybody ever got to answering questions relating to further study and careers, was 'just study what you like and worry about a job later'," says Haydn.

He points out that this was particularly frustrating given that, like many others, he was trying to decide what to do for the rest of his life, and wanting to balance his fields of interest with industry needs and remuneration rates.


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