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Discovery Summer School 2018

Monday 3 September 2018

The Discovery Project is a mentoring project for young people aged 14-19 with Autism Spectrum Conditions which culminates each year in the free two-day residential Summer School hosted by Cardiff University. This year, the residential took place on the 12th-13th July, with a group of 25 young learners, supported by university student ambassadors from a range of academic schools.

The Summer School began with introductions and a talk from the Money and Advice team about the importance of budgeting. This included a taste test, comparing branded and non-branded chocolate, and the results surprised many of us. This helped to inform the planning for what they would cook later that night – there was a range of dishes produced, from stir fry to Eton Mess – and even the dishes were done!

On Thursday afternoon, everyone got on the bus to go to Cardiff Met for a session about Computer Game Design. The pupils had a go at designing their own mobile app as well as learning about all the different courses available at Cardiff Metropolitan University.

For many, the highlight of the Summer School came in the evening, when Rules of Play, a board game shop in the city centre, (https://rulesofplay.co.uk/ ) came along to lead a Dungeons and Dragons taster session. One game of 4 quickly became 2 games of 6 and the whole evening being designated to designing their characters.

Over the two days, the aim of the summer school was to show the participants the variety of courses on offer at university, and we managed to cram a lot into those two days. On the second day we went over to Caerau to look around the Iron Age Hill Fort that is being excavated by the CAER Heritage project. Throughout the morning session we looked at some of the artefacts that had already been found, as well as finding out more about the exciting plans for the site.

After a quick lunch in town with their remaining budget, the participants headed to the Cardiff University School of Engineering for a session about renewable energies where they were asked to build a model turbine and test it out on the wind machine. They then had a tour of the facilities and ran into some friendly current students who were researching the technology needed to make concrete ‘self-heal’.

To finish we headed back to the University halls of residence for some cake and sandwiches, and a graduation ceremony – attend by friends and family, and complete with caps and gowns to try on.

Watch this space for our video of the summer school that will be coming out soon!

Discovery summer school for Cardiff University
© WALES NEWS SERVICE

Discovery summer school for Cardiff University
© WALES NEWS SERVICE

Discovery summer school for Cardiff University
© WALES NEWS SERVICE

Discovery summer school for Cardiff University
© WALES NEWS SERVICE