The next generation of science and technology entrepreneurs are being ‘incubated’ at Ipswich Grammar School, thanks to a newly opened $10.5 million technology centre.
The new science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) centre has been five years in the making with about 1000 students from prep to year 12 now using the facility.
The three-storey building includes a 155-seat lecture theatre, learning spaces and laboratories where students are getting hands on with everything from building bridges out of spaghetti to printing their own 3D models.
Ipswich Mayor Teresa Harding welcomed the new technology centre ahead of significant employment growth in Ipswich manufacturing.
“Ipswich is taking leadership in defence technology and advanced manufacturing, with a 196 per cent increase in sector jobs projected to 2041,” Mayor Harding said.
“Cutting-edge technology centres in our local schools will ensure students are best-placed to access the future opportunities of our city’s growth.”
Ipswich Grammar School Headmaster Richard Morrison said the 157-year-old school had its eyes on the future.
“It’s a wonderful new building that will help our boys reach their STEM education goals,” Mr Morrison said.
With 90 per cent of current school students expected to work in jobs that require STEM knowledge, Mr Morrison said STEM skills were important part of a well-rounded education.
The school has a long history of Old Boys who have gone on to achieve great things in the sciences.
John Bradfield was best known as the chief proponent of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in which he oversaw both the design and construction. He was also the consulting engineer for the Story Bridge in Brisbane.
Mr Bradfield won a scholarship to Ipswich Grammar School where he was awarded dux of the school in 1885.
Another notable Ipswich Grammar School Old Boy Raymond Dart, went on to discover the first fossil ever found of an extinct hominin, closely related to humans, in South Africa.
He attended the school from 1906 until 1909.