One of our founding board members, Dr. Herbert Sauro, was asked to speak about K-12 Educational Outreach initiatives at the IMAG Conference this March in Washington, DC. Many governmental granting agencies were present, hoping to learn more about how their federal dollars can best support our next generation of scientists.
An excerpt from Dr. Sauro, a professor at the University of Washington Dept. of BioEngineering:
“In this talk, I will describe two educational activities I have been involved in: one at the K-12 level and a second at the undergraduate junior level. I have been on the board for a number of years of a biomaker space in Seattle, called SoundBio Lab. This is a group of enthusiasts who have put together a fairly extensive molecular biology wet lab that can be used by laypeople and other interested groups such as the Seattle iGEM High School team. SoundBio also goes out to elementary and middle schools, as well as other locations, to organize after-school science activities. In addition, SoundBio has Saturday science events for anyone who wants to attend. The initial development of SoundBio was supported by outreach components from the National Science Foundation. Last year we organized a ‘Be a Scientist for a Day' game event for middle-school girls and under-represented minorities. This involved hands-on DNA fruit extraction, a novel cancer discovery game, and micropipetting practice. We will also be introducing a new event this year based around the theme of oscillators which will involve hands-on activities and modeling exercises. In the second part of the talk, I will briefly discuss a model game I have devised and use in my undergraduate systems biology modeling class.”
We are grateful for Dr. Sauro’s continued collaboration with Sound Bio and his efforts towards advancing the goals of our educational outreach program.