North West University get BMW


North West – The North West University’s Mafikeng  Campus Science Centre has welcomed the donation of a BMW 3 Series  educational display vehicle as a result of a joint effort between BMW  South Africa and The Department of Science and Technology (DST).

North West University


As part of the automobile manufacturer’s continued commitment to  enhancing drive, passion and excellence in mathematics, science,  engineering and technology studies in the country, BMW South Africa  has once again collaborated with the DST in the handover of the fourth  BMW 3 Series educational display car.

The vehicle was officially handed over to the UNW at a ceremony on  Wednesday, 18 September where Deputy Minister of Science and  Technology, Advocate Michael Masutha addressed the students, guests  and media. “As the vehicle boasts various technologies, which are all  inspired by science, research and innovation, I trust the vehicle will  inspire learners with hope and energy to excel in their studies and  chosen careers.”

The role of DST in the development of science centres is to  contribute to the existence of an environment that enables local  science centres to operate optimally. “The science centres serve to  educate and promote science and technology by engaging schools and the  public as well as to develop, nurture, encourage and support talents  in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) making the collaboration  with BMW South Africa hugely beneficial,” added Masutha.

The BMW 3 Series educational display cars were built in the  pre-production stage of the new BMW 3Series at Plant Rosslyn, Pretoria  in early 2012. As pre-production vehicles, they are not allowed to be  registered and would have been scrapped.

“Deciding to put these vehicles to better use was an easy decision to  make and one that we are very proud of,” said Esther Langa, Manager:  Corporate Affairs for BMW South Africa. “We have seen from our BMW  Maths, Science and Technology Excellence Project (MST) programme,  running in 42 schools around the country, that kids learn about  science and maths best when presented with real-world practical  examples that they can touch, see and feel,” added Langa.

BMW South Africa’s MST Project deploys mobile laboratories, known as  BMW Centres of Excellence, to schools that serve historically  disadvantaged communities. As a result, more than 40 000 learners and  148 teachers are direct beneficiaries of this Project, which delivers  maths and science pass rates around 20% higher than the national average.

The Cape Town Science Centre, Vuwani Science Centre in Limpopo and  Unizul Science Centre in KwaZulu Natal have already benefited from  their BMW 3Series educational display cars which were donated over the  last couple of months.

The final BMW 3Series educational display vehicle will be handed over  to the Osizweni Discovery Centre in Mpumalanga. In addition, BMW South  Africa will also be developing interactive graphical displays which  will use imagery text and video materials to highlight basic  scientific concepts such as inertia, acceleration, combustion and  friction, to illustrate how they are present in and enable cars to  perform. These graphical displays will complement the car displays at  each of the science centres.