The 2nd Schonland Lecture of the year and the 30th since its inception was an incredible event (both in terms of its content and reception). The lecture, entitled “A look at high- energy physics in the vacuum state of four dimensional relativistic spacetime” was delivered Dr Kate Bryan. Dr Bryan is an old DSG pupil, who went to Rhodes University. She started studying a BA at Rhodes, but changed to a BSc Majoring in Physics and Philosophy. Her research and post graduate studies combined Physics and Philosophy and looked at our understanding of time (which is required in both disciplines). According to Dr Bryan, in her research,
there was a focus on communication without jargon (so the two disciplines could understand each other) and this is what she tries to bring into her teaching as it is the ideas and concepts, not the sounding smart, that matters.
Delivered to a packed Schonland lecture venue, Dr Bryan took an audience (that ranged from junior school pupils to retired teachers) on an incredible journey not only through the known universe, but through our understanding of it. Anecdotal, funny, thought-provoking and comprehensively prepared, the audience was held, spell-bound by what Dr Bryan had to say. How do you know when pupils have responded to a lecture? Well Dr Bryan was still fielding
questions 45minutes after her talk (as well as signing posters!).
The Schonland lecture is a space for staff and pupils to potentially lecture to an interested audience on something that a staff member or pupil is interested in or has some expertise in. This is the template of what academically learning at tertiary education is all about. Now seemingly more than ever, we live in a world where intellectual pursuit and academic curiosity is being eroded and now actively destroyed. As such, the success of Wednesday’s lecture is hugely uplifting and must be built on.
Mr Joe Orsmond