Reaching for the Stars
This November saw the launch of the new Billingham Society, aimed at academic enrichment for Years Seven to Nine.
“We hope, through the events and through the speakers whom the students will hear from, pupils will be encouraged to explore new academic areas,’ said Miss Waller, Head of Enrichment. “Our goal is to whet their appetite to learn more, to read around new subjects, maybe even carrying on studying them over the coming decades.”
The Billingham Society is named after an RGS Worcester alumnus, Dr John Billingham. Dr Billingham himself was an Eld Scholar, studying at RGS Worcester between 1939 and 1947. He had a long and distinguished career in the field of science, chairing the International Academy of Astronautics SETI Committee. He was also the former Chief of the Life Sciences Division at NASA Ames Research Center and Acting Chief of the Programme Office for the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence – the first person in the US to head a government unit officially concerned with extra terrestrial intelligence!
Dr Billingham, therefore, spent his life pushing boundaries and challenging orthodox thinking through his enquiring mind – the Billingham Society hopes to encourage the next generation of RGS Worcester students to do the same.
Meetings will take place regularly, with short ‘Moments of Inspiration’ sessions where students will have the opportunity to attend after-school workshops on topics as diverse this year as the Geography of Other Planets, Illustrating Dickens, Frog Dissection and the Science of the Impossible. There are also trips planned to, for example, Worcester Cathedral, as well as a formal dinner in the Trinity Term.
The first official meetings of the Society began this week with Year Seven discussing Human Rights on Wednesday. Last night, in a session led by Miss Freeman, a group from the Society gained a fascinating insight into the work of Anthony Gormley, investigating the idea of the body as art form.
The Society is open to all Year Seven to Nine students who are interested in exploring some of these exciting ideas: please email Miss Waller (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any queries.
Miss Jane Waller
Head of Enrichment