UC scientists mix technology, art and roleplay to show teens the earth’s power

UC geologist scientists have developed an exciting hi-tech game to help high school students understand the power of the earth.

The game, called ‘Magma Drillers Save Plant Earth’ was developed by UC Volcanologist Associate Professor Ben Kennedy and geological 3D visualisation expert Dr Jonathan Davidson with help from artists, digital experts and educators.

Ben Kennedy creating magma in their lab

The game integrates storytelling, 3D software, video technology, holograms, comic art and geology to teach secondary school students about the inner workings of volcanoes and the role of geologists and engineers.

Dr Kennedy, who last year won

a New Zealand Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award for his inspiring and engaging teaching, says he is always looking for ways to make learning fun and more engaging for students.

“We can’t keep teaching the way we’ve always taught and expect our students to stay engaged – not when we’re competing with gaming technology and Hollywood special effects. As teachers we need to keep up and stay relevant – this game is just one of the ways we’re doing that.”

The project received $30,000 in funding from the Unlocking Curious Minds 2017 funding round, administered by the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment. UC provided in-kind support through staff time, use of equipment and facilities.

The UC scientists hope to share the game with other schools, museums and educational centres around New Zealand.

SVA’s 10 Essential Lessons for Sustaining a Youth Movement

The Student Volunteer Army (SVA) this week released the 10 Essential Lessons for starting, growing and sustaining a Youth Movement, as understood by the SVA and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student leaders.

In July 2018, 28 student leaders from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School traveled to New Zealand to engage with 30 members of the 2018 Student Volunteer Army Executive.  The two groups participated in a week long exchange of ideas on youth-led change, sustainable movements, leadership and activism.

To find out more go here>

Email phishing test exercise

Did you know 45% of the world’s sent email is SPAM?

While some SPAM email can be harmless enough, there are people out there who use email to target others, exploit their personal information and data or alter the behaviour of the device they are using.

To help us understand how well we are supporting and educating UC students and staff on cyber security we will be carrying out random phishing test exercises between now and the end of year.

The exercise will involve sending emails that use techniques similar to those used by cyber criminals to encourage the recipient to take a specific action. We will send these to a random group of UC email addresses and monitor the outcome – link clicks or attachment opens. We will only be recording the number of actions taken during the exercise and what technique was responded to. No personal information of individuals in the test group will be retained.

UC’s takes this kind of exploitative SPAM email seriously and employs a number of tools to reduce the amount that gets to you. The most effective way to reduce harm to you, your data and UC is to be aware of techniques being used by cyber criminals and to educate users about what to look for, how to react and who to report incidents to.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact the ITS Service Desk on 0508 UC IT HELP (0508 824 843) or on 03 369 5000.

%d bloggers like this: