Lab opens new doors for pupils

Dream Factory Foundation executive director Lusanda Magwape, left, and Nadine Maselesele getting ready to unveil the new Dream Lab at the school.

Salt River High school has unveiled a new hi-tech computer lab, made possible by a donation from a past pupil.

Nadine Maselesele set up the Dream Lab with a grant she was awarded after being nominated by the Dream Factory Foundation to be a Facebook Community Leadership Fellow.

Dream Factory Foundation executive director Lusanda Magwape said they had nominated Nadine because of the work she had been doing at the school.

“She worked on a recycling project, and she is also part of the tutoring initiative at the school,” she said.

Nadine was selected last year as one of three South African fellows of the Facebook Community Leadership Programme (FCLP), a global initiative that invests in people who are building communities using Facebook’s tools and platforms.

Nadine visited the Facebook headquarters in San Francisco, California, where she was introduced to the programme.

Nadine said she would like the Dream Lab to change lives at the school.

“I always wanted to change someone’s life, and I am changing a lot of people’s lives by introducing them to different things, tools and programs,” she said.

Robotics, coding, effective social media use, basic computer skills and how to put CVs together were just some of the things pupils would be able to learn about in the Dream Lab, said Ms Magwape.

Nadine is a full-time electrical engineering student at Northlink College, but she still finds time in the week to go back to her old high school to teach pupils science, maths and computer skills.

Grade 11 Simone Adams said she had not worked with computers before and was thrilled with the new facility.

Grade 12, Shaheed Ramazani said he was eager to learn new skills.

Acting school principal Fairuz Patel said the Dream Lab would help pupils with their assignments.

They would work out a schedule so the whole school would have access to the 20 computers in the lab.

Ms Patel praised Nadine for giving back to the school.

“Nadine had the drive and she pushed forward and she inspires the other pupils to follow their dreams,” she said.

Asked how much it had cost to set up the lab, the Dream Factory Foundation’s Christelle Atibia said the FCLP had instructed them not to disclose that amount.