The University of Guyana’s Faculty of Natural Science was given a boost with the donation of over $8.3Million (US$40,000) in equipment by ExxonMobil, Yuesday morning.
Among the highly specialised equipment presented were; a Baader Multi-Purpose Coma Corrector, a Bsc Optics Diode Laser; Wireless Temperature Sensor; Demo Mirror Concave; 1 Meade Series 5000 HD-60 Eyepiece Kit; 1 Orion XX 16G GO-TO Truss Dobson Ian Telescope; ZWO ASI 071 Pro Cooled Color CMOS Telescope among others.
This donation was made following a request after a fire in 2015 destroyed the section of the Faculty of Natural Sciences that houses the equipment for various departments. Among the items destroyed was equipment for the physics laboratory belonging to the Department of mathematics, Physics and Statistics, the Computer Science Department and the specimen collection and equipment from the Department of Biology.
At the handover ceremony Vice-Chancellor of the university, Professor Ivelaw Griffith said the initiative is one which highlights the determination of the department to reinvent itself and build new partnerships while doing so. “It matters; the investment that Exxon Mobil along with the university is making. It recognises the vital importance of rebuilding physics in a significant way – not only quad physics but physics because of its importance to the other enterprises of the university,” he said.
In his remarks, Country Manager for ExxonMobil, Rod Henson, said it has been envisioned that Guyana will develop beyond its current stature and initiatives such as these will ensure all are prepared to benefit from the expected future economy.
“Education is a fundamental building block of individual opportunity. STEAM skills, in particular, are critical in ensuring today’s students are going to be prepared for the future opportunities both in Guyana and the broader world. Support in this area is really a strategic investment in the future generation,” Henson was quoted by government’s Department of Public Information as saying.
He noted that the agency is proud to be part of this important project that will continue to advance mathematics and science education at the university.
Calvin Bernard, Dean of the Faculty of Natural Sciences thanked ExxonMobil for its contribution noting it will make an impactful difference to the lives of the students.
“With the new equipment, the quality of the educational experience in the physics courses has been lifted significantly. This is particularly important as the Faculty and University seeks to ensure it prepares graduates for roles in a more technologically advanced economy including oil and gas,” Dean said.
It was highlighted that the equipment was procured from two companies, PASCO and OPT.