September 26, 2012

Saturday workshops introduce middle-schoolers to university majors

Posted: September 26, 2012
Kids in lab
During an ExSciTE workshop this past summer, Elias Murphy (left) and Larry Ross examined owl pellets to find clues about the types of food owls eat.

Valley students in grades six through nine are invited to participate in one or more free Saturday morning workshops designed to introduce them to fields of study including forensic science, statistics and environmental science.

The ExSciTE (Exploring Science Through Experiences) workshops are offered at ASU’s West campus through the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, the core college on the West campus. The initiative is sponsored by a grant from Women & Philanthropy, a philanthropic program of the ASU Foundation for a New American University.

Workshops from 9 a.m. to noon are offered Oct. 6 and Nov. 3, as well as March 2 and April 13, 2013.

“The ExSciTE project is designed to familiarize middle-school students with some of the many majors available to them at the West campus,” said Susannah Sandrin, assistant clinical professor in New College’s School of Mathematical and Natural Sciences. “These fun workshops also are meant to help participants gain confidence by sharing their diverse talents and skills with other students and envision themselves as successful, happy college students.”

Parents are welcome to join their children for the workshops, taught by ASU students and faculty members.

Fall workshops include “Got Water? Sustainability and global resources,” which looks at our behaviors related to water use and the environment; “Elections & Numbers: What do the polls really tell us,” which examines the reliability of election polls, and “Science Behind the Crime: The case of the missing chocolate cake, part 1,” in which students will learn about techniques including fingerprinting and DNA analysis.

The spring workshops are “Is Phoenix really the least sustainable city on the planet,” exploring what makes a city sustainable and individual strategies that can be taken to live a more sustainable life; “Mythbusters (Science and Numbers),” which looks at how to debunk some popular urban legends, armed only with data and numbers; and “Science Behind the Crime: The case of the missing chocolate cake, part 2,” which focuses on DNA fingerprinting techniques.

The schedule is:

Oct. 6: Students in grades 6-7 choose between “Science Behind the Crime” and “Got Water?” Students in grades 8-9 participate in “Elections & Numbers.”

Nov. 3: Students in grades 6-7 participate in “Elections & Numbers.” Students in grades 8-9 choose between “Science Behind the Crime” and “Got Water?”

March 2: Students in grades 6-7 choose between “Is Phoenix really the least sustainable city on the planet?” and “Mythbusters.” Students in grades 8-9 participate in “Science Behind the Crime.”

April 13: Students in grades 6-7 participate in Science Behind the Crime.” Students in grades 8-9 choose between “Is Phoenix really the least sustainable city on the planet?” and “Mythbusters.”

There is no charge for the workshops or for parking on campus, at 4701 W. Thunderbird Road in Phoenix, for workshop participants. Registration priority is given to students whose families are low-income (those who qualify for free or reduced lunch) and/or whose parents did not graduate from college.

For more information, visit https://sites.google.com/site/exsciteatasuwest/, or contact Susannah Sandrin at (602) 543-5212 or Susannah.Sandrin@asu.edu.

(602) 543-5209
Public Affairs at the West campus