A leading space scientist has officially opened a new state-of-the-art centre at Bedford Modern School.
Space Scientist, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, unveiled the science centre on Friday, June 16, with staff, students and special guests.
Following an investment of more than £9m the new centre includes 17 laboratories, three in each subject for specialist use and eight multi-purpose laboratories with adjacent preparation space.
A separate floor is devoted to biology, chemistry and physics and a central learning atrium provides a flexible teaching and display area.
Dr Aderin-Pocock said: “It has been wonderful to visit Bedford Modern School today - there is a real sense of community here.
“I have spoken with several students who have asked me so many impressive questions and I can see that this level of interest is as a result of the fantastic encouragement from their teachers. I am looking forward to returning to see everybody back in action.”
Headmaster Michael Hall said: “The science centre is by far the most significant capital investment in the school’s history and seeing teachers and students using this exceptional teaching and learning environment this afternoon is wonderful.
“Biology, chemistry, physics and psychology are already popular subjects at BMS and currently more than a third of our sixth formers study three sciences including maths. Many of these students will go on to study a science-related course at university. This is in no small part due to the efforts of the excellent teaching staff who inspire students of all ages every day and in this incredible new facility will continue to inspire countless young scientists for many years to come.”
Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock is a scientist and broadcaster referred to as the ‘face of space’. She is the presenter of the astronomical institution The Sky at Night.
She has led projects making anything from land mine detectors to satellite sub-systems that measure variables like wind speed to improve our knowledge of climate change.
In presentations Dr Aderin-Pocock talks about exploring space with missions like Rosetta, and how we live in a galaxy with 200 billion stars. She believes that with 100 billion galaxies in the universe, there must be life out there – simply as a matter of probability.