Science Under the Stars

October 25, 2011

DURHAM, NC – Building on earlier successes with K-12 classroom outreach and a landmark appearance at the 2010 USA Science and Engineering Festival, Duke University students and faculty invited Triangle-area families to join them for an evening of interactive science demonstrations called “Science Under the Stars.”

This year’s festival included hands-on, all-ages activities from Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Engineering, Genomics, Environmental Science, Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics.

Six graduate students from the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, including Joe Saelens, Neha Sharma, Kim Starr, Katherine Rempe, Casey Perley, and Kristen Smith, participated in the event. The MGM student-led activities focused on bacteria and genetics, specifically, demonstrating the genetics of smell and taste using different odors and sodium benzoate paper and how vaccines work using puzzle pieces. They also brought some Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and gave a talk about bio-containment and conducted a matching game where participants were challenged to match the location in the house where a bacterial swab was taken with the plate grown from that bacteria.

“I think it’s important that not only that we do the great research that goes on here but also that we share our expertise and our enthusiasm for science with the community,” said chemistry instructor, Dr. Kenneth Lyle.

Science Under the Stars was held from 6:00pm to 8:00pm on Wednesday, October 19, 2011 on the front lawn of the French Family Science Center on Duke’s West Campus. This was the seventh year for the event.

Photo Gallery
Visit the MGM Photo Gallery for photos of the 2011 event.

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