Churchill Academy

Professor Dame Athene Donald opens science and technology building

Tuesday 19th March saw the official opening of the Athene Donald building at Churchill Academy & Sixth Form – the culmination of an eighteen-month project to deliver state of the art facilities to students.

Professor Dame Athene Donald was invited as our guest of honour and perform the official ‘cutting of the ribbon duties’ of the new science and technology building, before touring the classrooms, and speaking with teachers and students.  

Year 8 students, Freya and Polly proposed the building be named after Professor Donald in a research competition in 2018 that set to honour women in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). Over the course of her career, Professor Donald has excelled in her field of physics, and was appointed DBE in 2010 for her services to the subject. She has also been a proactive advocate of women in STEM, and was awarded the L’Oreal-UNESCO award for Women in Science in 2009.

As well as her numerous academic accolades, there is a Churchill connection. Professor Donald is the Master of Churchill College, Cambridge – the first woman to hold that position, and also the first woman to be made professor in any of the physical sciences at Cambridge.  

“It was an extremely proud day for us at Churchill Academy & Sixth Form,” said Headteacher Chris Hildrew. “Not only officially opening the building, but having such an inspiring and passionate speaker who was able to  deliver such a wonderfully positive message to our students, staff, and the wider Churchill community.”