Throughout her Year 12 Design and Technology studies in 2016, alumni student Briannan Rider spent many months researching the issues surrounding poor water quality in third world countries in the hope of designing a project that could overcome some of these issues. Briannan decided to target her work on Ethiopia and design a method of water filtration for aiding local villages to improve quality of life. Her efforts saw her achieve a mark of 97% for the Higher School Certificate in the subject and receive a nomination for the ‘Shape’ exhibition which showcases exemplary HSC works.

Briannan also entered her project design into the Australian Stockholm Junior Water Prize. This competition is open to students up to twenty years of age and is based around Technology, Science and Design. The ASJWP is an annual competition for high school students focusing on projects aimed at improving the quality of life through improvement of water quality, water resources management, water protection and wastewater treatment.

Briannan’s aim was to design a filtration system that could be made by locals using resources readily available in the natural environment. This included the extraction and purification of clay, charcoal, sand and stone. She recognised the need to create methods and systems to teach these processes to the local communities within Ethiopia and for this she compiled a teaching resource pack for teachers and students to aid them in learning the importance of clean water, how to extract materials, and build the water filtration system.

Finalists were required to present to a panel of judges via videoconference. Briannan was awarded a High Commendation for her project. The High Commendation has never previously been awarded but the judging panel wished to further recognise Briannan’s strong research, investigation and novel solutions.