VINCENNES, Ind. - Students from five high schools participated in Vincennes University’s Super Science Saturday - a day filled with activities and a panel discussion about careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics - on Nov. 11.
The culmination of the day was presentation of Josh Denhart and his Amazing Chemistry Show, a high energy show featuring explosions, foam, and fire.
“This definitely gives me an interest in finding a chemistry-related career,” said Dalton Julian, a junior at North Knox High School. “The highlight of my day was finding out how to silver a bottle because the end result looks really amazing and shows the potential of finding out what you can do, with even a little bit of knowledge of chemistry.”
Throughout the day high school students investigated, experimented, and learned more about the wonders of science through a variety of presentations and experiments, all sponsored by VU’s College of Science, Engineering, and Mathematics. VU’s new $25 million Updike Hall was the site for the experiments.
“I have not been sure about what I was I am going to do in the future, so today really helped me begin to made decisions about that,” said Molly Mahan, a sophomore at South Knox High School. “I did a Climate Detectives activity. It was cool. I actually had a lot of fun doing it. After lunch, we did an Urban Agriculture activity and made a lettuce tower, which was really neat.”
Students chose from nine different activities ranging from Projectile Motion Experiments: How Big a ‘Splat’ Can We Make to Making Moisturizer to Behind the Scenes at a Veterinary Clinic.
“It was really interesting visiting various chemistry labs and I had a great time learning about various reactions and the types of polymers that they had,” Dalton said.
Super Science Saturday concluded with The Amazing Chemistry Show featuring a dazzling array of explosions, colored foam, liquid nitrogen, and glow-in-the-dark solutions. The chemistry show was open to the public and admission was free.
“The students are excited and they seem very interested - and that includes their parents, too. It’s a good way for them to see what we have to offer at VU,” said Molly Schwitz, assistant professor of mathematics.
The Society of Women Engineers sponsored a panel discussion about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers, offering students the opportunity to ask questions. Participants included Dr. Melody Catt, a veterinarian who is an assistant professor of biology at VU; April Bledsoe, a mechanical engineering technician; and Aditi Khatar, a biomedical engineer at Cook Medical.