Newport High pupils play cyber detectives at USW

Newport high school cyber security trip

An 11-week project for schoolchildren from Newport High School has come to an end with a Treasure Hunt at the University of South Wales (USW).

The aim of the collaborative project was to raise awareness of cyber security and careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM).

As part of the ‘Humanoid Invasion’, the school was targeted by fictional, evil scientist Emma Bunsen, who turned some of the staff into Humanoids. Over a series of weeks, the pupils were taught how to inspect a crime scene using digital forensics techniques, and analysed witness statements relating to the crime. The programme covered subjects such as the Internet of Things (designing their own devices), cyber security and future technology.

Through solving a series of puzzles and challenges, the students discovered that Emma was not evil after all, but was doing important work to help protect people by developing medicines and antidotes to harmful toxins.

The project ended with a visit to USW’s Newport campus, where the Year 7 pupils received a certificate of achievement for their efforts.

Clare Johnson, Partnerships and Outreach Manager at USW, said: “We have thoroughly enjoyed working with the pupils of Newport High School. Introducing STEM subjects early on in children's education is a crucial step in improving diversity in the industry, as it raises aspirations and shows them the huge variety of opportunities that are open to them, long before they need to choose subject specialisms at GCSE level.”

Gill Lee, Headteacher at Newport High School, said “It was a privilege to work with USW on this project. We want to integrate Higher Education and careers into our work at Newport High School and this project gave our students the opportunity to learn about both.

“Taking the students onto campus was a great way to complete the project and now all of these students have aspirations to go onto university.”