Mrs Bennet leads the way

A Chemistry Competitor.

As we all know, Mrs J Bennet is Head of Mathematics at St Augustine’s Priory.  So it came as a bit of a surprise when we discovered that she had entered a Chemistry competition.

No stranger to entering her students for mathematical competitions galore, Mrs Bennet decided that it was time for her to have a go.  Thus she entered for The Chemistry Communicators’ Challenge and, to her delight, was one of ten shortlisted finalists.

A delighted Mrs Bennet on right.

On 20th November Mrs Bennet attended the finals held at the Royal Society of Chemistry where she delivered her presentation.  To celebrate the International Year of the Periodic Table (IYPT) each entry focussed on an element and Mrs Bennet’s chosen element was Cobalt.

To her, and our delight, Mrs Bennet was selected as runner-up.  This is a great achievement and Mrs Bennet is to be congratulated on her success!

Mrs Bennet (far left).

As Mrs Bennet says of her talk, ‘Cobalt – A Tale of Beauty and the Beast’:  ‘Cobalt ores have been used for centuries to produce beautiful, intense shades of blue in pottery, ceramics and, particularly, glass.  Gothic cathedrals became medieval showcases for stained glass craftsmen and their workmanship is still awe inspiring today.  Yet, with the mining of its ore came death and disease, so much so that its name is derived from the German for ‘evil goblin’.

In the 21st century we look less to the beauty that cobalt offers, more to its uses in technology.  Its scarcity, coupled with its use in rechargeable batteries, perpetuates the dreadful conditions blighting the lives of those who seek it out.  Cobalt has brought beauty and also agony, pain and exploitation.’