Honorary Physicist at CERN Exploring the Realms of High-Energy Radiation

As the prize for winning the CERN Beamline for Schools Competition, Team Accelerating Africa, comprising ten scholars and two educators, was awarded the usage of one of the beamlines on the Proton Synchrotron, one of CERN’s main particle accelerators, to conduct our own experiment. This opportunity was perfect for improving the status of South African science, our own experience within scientific research and for motivating the execution of an ambitious experiment — one which would do justice to the capabilities of advanced research equipment, as was offered by CERN.


My Recount of the Experience

Accelerating Africa Proposal

Physics Conference Guest Speaker

Furthermore, I was selected as an ambassador for our physics team, being asked to deliver a public lecture on our experiment at the 2016 South African Institute of Physics Conference at the University of Cape Town, in my final year of school.

Read more on my story in the Rosebank Killarney Gazette

Our experiment also gained interest from the following publishers:


A South African Schools Top Achiever

Life-threatening heart condition couldn’t stop St John’s College top achiever
2016-12-30 10:46
Iavan Pijoos, News24
Johannesburg – After being diagnosed with a life-threatening heart disease a few years ago, Brandon MacKenzie of St John’s College has exemplified the spirit of perseverance and humility. 

MacKenzie bagged nine distinctions in this year’s IEB matric exams. He was diagnosed with Wolff Parkinson White Syndrome and Long QT syndrome – both electrophysiological cardiac disorders – when he was 13-years-old and has undergone numerous operations across the world. 

« I believe in never presuming your place in society, taking it for granted, or using it as a certain foundation for your endeavours, because it is an abstract reassurance, » MacKenzie said. More on News24… 

Joburg teen beats all odds to score 10 distinctions
Five years ago, Brandon MacKenzie collapsed during a school chapel service. The budding oarsman was diagnosed with Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome and probable familial long QT syndrome – both of which predispose him to dangerous and abnormal heart rhythms.

Four operations, countless prayers and hundreds of hours of study later, the St John’s College matriculant’s determination to persevere has been rewarded with 10 distinctions in the Independent Examinations Board exams, whose results are due out today.

The Johannesburg teen obtained distinctions for Afrikaans, English, French, geography, life orientation, maths, physical science, advanced programme maths, Trinity College of London musical practicals and music. He wrote his matric music exam in 2015. More on Sunday Times… 

These are St John’s two top guns


According to MacKenzie’s results, he achieved: Afrikaans (91%), english (88%), french (95%), geography (89%), life orientation (86%), maths (95%), physical science (94%), tcl practical 7 (86%), and advanced programme maths (83%).

He ranked within the top 5% of pupils in six or more subjects, achieved in the top 1% for Afrikaans and physical science, and had an average score of 91%.

Five years ago, Mackenzie was diagnosed with a life-threatening heart condition that threatened his life.

And after several operations around the world, he now exemplifies the spirit of perseverance and humility, solidifying himself as one of the top achievers and an all-rounder to boot. More on The Citizen… 

St Johns pupil’s ace their exams


Brandon MacKenzie earned an impressive nine distinctions and recieved the IEB’s Outstanding Achievement award, placing within the top 5 per cent in six or more subjects and was in the top 1 per cent for Afrikaans and physical sciences. MacKenzie was able to receive an incredible 91 per cent average. More on North Eastern Tribune… 

Hy Mag Nie Swem, Toe Leer Hy Maar


Van verskeie operasietafels tot bo aan die akademiese leer: Brandon MacKenzie het bewys dat geloof, harde werk en deursettingsvermoë tot wonderwerke kan lei. Wolff Parkinson White-sindroom (WPW) is in gr. 7 by Brandon, oudleerling van St. John’s College in Johannesburg, gediagnoseer. Dit is ‘n siektetoestand wat die hart se tempo beïnvloed en tot dodelike aritmie kan lei. WPW is later ook by sy jonger broer gediagnoseer. Brandon is ingelig dat ‘n hartablasie-prosedure ‘n 95%-kans kan bied om sy toestand te verbeter. Meer op Press Reader deur Netwerk24…