Most Exceptional Escapades in Science – April 10th, 2015

Posted by | April 11, 2015 | NEWS/UPCOMING | No Comments

General Information and Schedule For April 10th, 2015

You can see some of the results of the activities at this link.

This event showcases various scientific pursuits, including the opportunity for you to engage in hands-on activities, as well as interact with some of the most prominent scientists in the world. This year’s program is looking awesome! We’re going to explore a variety of SCIENCE themed pursuits. Note that targeted audience is Grade 10, 11, and 12 students, but we do on occasion have a few Grade 8s and 9s as well.

Conference sign-in open as early as 8:30am, with the program starting at 9:00am SHARP. See below for full schedule details.

8:30 am STUDENT Registration opens

9:00 WELCOME FROM Dr. David Ng
9:10 – 9:40 Dr. Mark MacLachlan, Department of Chemistry, University of British Columbia
9:40 – 10:10 Dr. Shernaz Bamji, Department of Cellular & Physiological Sciences & The Brain Research Centre, UBC

10:10 – 10:20 10 minute break.

10:20 – 10:50 Dr. Jaymie Matthews, Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of British Columbia

10:50 – 11:00 Introduction to ESCAPADES rotations.
Rotation #1 – See descriptions of hand-on activities below.

12:00 – 1:00 LUNCH (on your own)

Rotation #2 – See descriptions of hand-on activities below.
Rotation #3 – See descriptions of hand-on activities below.

3:00 – 3:30 Close and draw prizes.
3:30PM END

HANDS-ON/INTERACTIVE ACTIVITIES for the 2015 Conference include:

I. THE WOMEN IN SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING CARD GAME (Beta testing session): Students will learn play a newly developed trading card game that focuses on iconic women in science and engineering, as well as explore some of the gender issue challenges that are prevalent in these disciplines. (Host: Michael Smith Labs)

II. THE ELECTRICAL DEVICE CHALLENGE: In which students will be provided a circuit board, components, some guidance and then a task to create mini devices. (Host: UBC Physics and Astronomy)

III. UNIVERSITY MICROSCOPY LAB (POND BIODIVERSITY): In which students will travel over to the Biological Sciences building and into the undergraduate microscopy lab. Here, pond water will be examined in an effort to observe, record, identify and classify various pond organisms (Host: UBC Biology)


Dr. Mark MacLachlan: Dr. MacLachlan’s research “is focused on materials chemistry. We make new chemical compounds with interesting properties then characterize them and study these properties. We develop diverse materials – solid-state structures, polymers, gels, glasses, and others – to address interesting scientific and engineering problems. (link)” As well, “MacLachlan has developed a new iridescent film made of silica that mimics the structure and properties of beetle shells, which could be used to coat glasses or windows and protect against harmful ultraviolet or infrared light. MacLachlan’s other discoveries have generated materials that show promise as electrodes for supercapacitors—new high-energy storage devices that may replace car batteries—and as alternative ways to safely store hydrogen for possible use in hydrogen-powered vehicles. (link)”

Dr. Shernaz Bamji: Dr. Bamji’s research is all about synapse formation and function. “Synapses of the central nervous system are highly specialized regions of cell-cell contact designed to rapidly and efficiently relay signals from one neuron to another. By establishing a dynamic yet precise network of synaptic connections, the brain is able to attain a level of functional complexity that enables not only simple motor tasks, but also sophisticated emotional and cognitive behaviour. The study of how synapses form and function is therefore essential to our ultimate understanding of higher brain functions such as learning and memory. (link)”

Dr. Jaymie Matthews: Dr. Matthews is “an astro-paparazzo who unveils the hidden lifestyles of stars by eavesdropping on “the music of the spheres.” His version of an interstellar iPod is Canada’s first space telescope, MOST (Microvariability & Oscillations of STars), which detects vibrations in the light of ringing stars too subtle to be seen even by the largest telescopes on Earth. As Mission Scientist leading the Canadian Space Agency’s MOST project, and an astrophysicist, his team of students and collaborators are trying to write a biography of our Sun – past and future – by studying its neighbours in the Milky Way. (link)”

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