Find the answers to all your questions about the Academy
What is the Molo Mhlaba Astro Academy?
The Astro Academy is an after-school club in which you will learn about the incredibly fascinating world of astronomy directly from professional female astronomers. No prior knowledge of astronomy is required, so don’t worry if you’ve never heard a thing about astronomy before! We will learn about topics that you wouldn’t normally hear about at school - subjects at the very cutting edge of current research - in a way that is fun and easy to understand. You will also get a chance to chat to girls and women who work in astronomy to learn what that’s like.
For those over 18 y/o, there will also be an opportunity to participate in the teaching programme, which will allow you to receive paid training and work to teach basic astronomy concepts to primary school children in schools across Khayelitsha.
What is astronomy?
Astronomy is the study of everything that we see in the sky: the Sun, the Moon, all the planets, and the stars - around 250 billion of them - that make up our galaxy, the Milky Way. But it is also about everything beyond the Milky Way. There are many more galaxies out there, at least 2 trillion of them! By studying astronomy, we can study literally everything in the Universe, and how this changed with time, from when the Universe was born until today.
What is the teaching programme?
If you are 18 y/o or over, while learning about astronomy, this programme will give you an opportunity to learn how to transmit that knowledge to young children, by becoming familiar with fun astronomy-based games and activities. You will practice how to run these games and activities with the help of professional educators, and then move on to doing them to children independently! This is a great opportunity to gain paid work experience.
How much does the Academy cost?
The Academy is free! All expenses will be covered by the bursaries.
What are the bursaries offered?
Astro Academy Bursary: covers all material, transportation, and other costs incurred by the Academy;
Teaching Programme: provides a salary to cover the training and the work that the participants will carry out at local primary schools.
Where will the Astro Academy take place?
Our main base will be at the Astrophysics department at the University of the Western Cape, in Bellville. Transport will be organised to pick everyone up from the Molo Mhlaba school in Harare Square, and to bring everyone back. We will also have some day trips to some of the main astronomical sites in and around Cape Town.
When will the Astro Academy begin?
Who is eligible to apply?
Grade 11, Grade 12, and recently matriculated female students who are currently enrolled in, or have matriculated from, a school in Khayelitsha.
Are there any requirements?
We require a minimum of 60% in science and mathematics as of your most recent semester or end-of-year grade. If your grades are lower but you think you should still be able to apply, contact us before applying.
How can I apply?
By simply filling in this application.
What if I have more questions?
Don’t hesitate to contact us at