The WITT Taranaki Science and Technology Fair has been running since 1983. Run by a committee of teachers from participating schools and industry representatives, the Fair is a place for students in the region to showcase their creative talents and learn from each other.
Students from Year 7 to Year 13 can enter in a range of categories from Scientific Investigation and Technological Development through to Robotics, Photography and Water Rockets.
Ian Gabites, Treasurer, said the Taranaki fair is unique. “It is one of the few fairs in New Zealand - perhaps the only one - that allows students to send their entries directly to the fair. In most other regions, students have to go through a school fair first, with schools sending only selected entries in."
During the fair, the projects are displayed, judged and prizes are awarded.
“As the Treasurer, it is a challenge to cover the cost of running the Fair. Without funding, we would have had to cut back on prizes. We’re never sure how many entries we are going to get, or how much sponsorship we are going to receive.”
Toi Foundation provided a grant of $1,500 in September 2020 to assist with the costs of running the Fair. “The funding has enabled us to continue to support students in Science and Technology in the region,” Ian said.
Over 1,000 entries have been received for this year’s Fair.
“Over the years, I have had numerous expressions of gratitude from parents who recognize the value of the Fair,” Terry Stowers, Co-Manager, said.
“This year we have had no trouble getting sponsors on board. We get great support from the judges and volunteers. It is that community involvement that shows us the Fair is worthwhile.”
The WITT Taranaki Science and Technology Fair will be held on 9th - 11th August 2021 at New Plymouth Boys High School. It is open to the public on Tuesday evening and Wednesday.