The St. Martin Secondary School, for the third consecutive time, has won the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge.
Gislain Francois of the St. Martin Secondary School won with the project dubbed Mosquito Buster, which is a mosquito repellent made from natural ingredients.
Francois won a Caribbean Science Foundation computerized mobile science and technology centre system, six approved science kits, and an all-expense paid trip to Florida where she will visit the Kennedy Space Centre among other venues related to science and technology.
Francois also won a special prize award for Best Innovation, Best Presentation, Best Plan and Project Design and the best use of STEM. Each special prize carried an award of two hundred dollars ($200.00).
The Convent High School emerged second with their Project Vegetable Garden, the Dominica Grammar School placed third with their project Math Helper 101, and the Dominica State College placed fourth with their Water Magnet project.
Gislain stated that she is very excited that she won the competition although she wasn’t confident herself and is particularly excited about the trip to the US.
“I decided to make a natural repellent instead of using other repellents that are made with the use of chemicals. I did the experiment and it worked, so I proceeded to make the candle, the bulb shade, the disinfectant, the garlic spray and the air freshener.”
She noted that she chose to do this project because of the ZIKA virus and other mosquito borne diseases.
Vanessa Seraphine, teacher at the St. Martin Secondary has worked with all three of the school’s winners.
“She worked very hard on that project and I am really satisfied. I listened to her when she was presenting and I saw that she really did an excellent presentation. Looking at the other projects, I saw she stood a good chance of winning”.
Ms Seraphine added that Gislain came up with the idea of solving the problem of mosquitoes.
“She had really mad ideas but it paid off; she did a lot of research and came up with all these different products. So she used her innovative mind and it paid off”.
Ms. Seraphine is also excited that she will be making her third science trip to the US and looks forward to participating next year.
Other special prizes were the most relevant to sustainable Caribbean community which went to the Goodwill Secondary School with their project the Solar A.C Unit and Best community and School involvement award to the Dominica Grammar School’s Math Helper 101.
Kendra Jean Jacques was the first winner of the Sagicor Visionaries Challenge with her project Flushometer in 2013 and Jeaselle Blaize in 2014 with her project dubbed Techno Gardeners.