The Young Rotary and the PCYC hosted the brightest science and engineering students from across the South West Slopes on Tuesday.
The Science and Engineering Challenge is a nationwide Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) outreach programme founded by the University of Newcastle and now in partnership with local communities, Rotary, universities and private sponsors.
Since 2010 Young Rotary has organised the South West Slopes Challenge day.
Young Rotary spokesman Frank Lincoln said Australia has a chronic shortage of engineers.
"Australia’s demand for engineers far exceeds its supply of graduates," he said.
"The country annually imports more than double the number of graduates from Australian Universities and has done so for more than a decade. That is why this challenge was introduced because, through the challenge, students experience aspects of science and engineering which they would not usually see in the school environment."
Young High School Science student Wasim Ali said he learned valuable lessons from the day.
“The day is important because we get to have fun with science and while we are doing that hang out with our friends,” he said.
Young High School Science teacher Victoria Greenaway said the day presents students with opportunities they might not get in the classroom.
"The challenge is important because students get to see how science can be applied to real-life situations," she said.
The Science and Engineering Challenge is important because students get to see how science can be applied to real life situations.Victoria Greenaway
“Australia needs to keep its scientists and its engineers into the future and this is where that stuff starts.”
Hennessey Catholic College Science student Mattea Tarce said she enjoyed the practical learning environment of the day.
"I think the challenge is good because it opens up different career options for students," she said.
Hennessy Catholic College Science teacher Tony Collins said the day offers students a different perspective on science.
“It is important for the students to experience different ways of thinking and that is what this day is all about,” he said.