Outstanding achievement in science by students from NZ girls’ schools

17 November 2015

The New Zealand Prime Minister’s Future Science Prize for 2015 has been awarded to Georgia Lala from Diocesan School for Girls, Auckland for outstanding achievement in carrying out a practical and innovative science research or technology project. Hannah received the $50,000 prize for developing an aquaponics system that grows plants for family consumption with a very low carbon footprint. Georgia developed a product which exposes the roots of plants, such as lettuce, to the nutrients released in a goldfish tank. There has been local and international interest in Georgia’s research and she has set up a trust fund so that schools will benefit from sales of her product.

In the seven years that the Prime Minister’s Future Science Prize has been awarded, the prize has gone to three boys and four girls. Of the four girls, three have attended girls’ schools: Georgia Lala, Diocesan School for Girls (2015), Hannah Ng from St Cuthbert’s College (2012), whose experiment on chicks discovered that blurring of peripheral vision could increase the rate of shortsightedness, and Nuan-Ting Huang, Diocesan School for Girls (2011), whose research project linked prolonged mental concentration with a decrease in pupil size and early onset shortsightedness.