Out-of-the-box thinking meets in-the-box pizza for a lunch dedicated to education

Mike Albrow talks with a family at the Science Adventures Family Science Night. Photo: Susan Dahl

If you smell the unmistakable aroma of pizza wafting through the hallways on Sept. 26, that’s probably the lunch that Fermilab’s Education Office is co-hosting with the Fermilab Graduate Student Association and Fermilab Friends for Science Education.

Each year the Education Office recruits graduate students, scientists and others interested in science education to get involved with Fermilab programs aimed at sparking children’s interest in science.

“It’s wonderful for the scientists and engineers at Fermilab to be able to affect young students in grades kindergarten through 12 and motivate and inspire them to one day want to be a scientist or engineer,” said Education Program Leader and FFSE President Susan Dahl.

During the lunch, speakers will discuss various volunteer opportunities for educational programs the Education Office offers. Such opportunities, which are key to the programs’ success, include teacher workshops, classroom presentations and mentor programs.

Engaging demonstrations can leave a lasting impression on students, said Fermilab Graduate Student Association officer Brian Tice, who will be attending the lunch. In fact, he still remembers a demonstration he saw on electricity from a visiting physics teacher when he was in third grade.

“I remember thinking that it was so cool that she knew how to explain such fascinating phenomena like the shock you get from a knob after scooting across carpet,” he said. “Of course, we immediately applied this knowledge by shocking each other.”

The lunch, which will be held from noon to 1 p.m. in Curia II on Wilson Hall’s second floor, is open to anyone wishing to satisfy their stomachs and their interests in science education. And for anyone who can’t attend but is interested in volunteering, e-mail Susan Dahl at sdahl@fnal.gov to be added to the Education Office’s listserv of volunteers.

Jessica Orwig