Thursday, August 1, 2013

NESACS and SCHB at the 2013 AAAS Family Science Days Outreach Event

This portion was written jointly by Jack Driscoll and Jennifer Maclachlan and submitted as part of the quarterly PR report for NESACS. 
February 16-17, 2013- Family Science Days at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)Meeting, HynesConvention Center Boston MA This spectacular science outreachevent was sponsored by AAAS and co-sponsored by the Cambridge Science Festival. This free two day event was attended by 3,700 people. The American Chemical Society: Northeastern Section of the ACS (NESACS) together with the ACS Division of Small Chemical Businesses(SCHB) reserved and staffed a booth. The ACS Office of Public Affairs provided several hundred copies both of Kids Discover Chemistry Magazine and the Celebrating Chemistry Nanotechnology National Chemistry Week handout in addition to Chemistry Ambassador sashes, stickers and pins for distribution at this event. There were more than 60 organizations at the Family Science Days.

Our hands-on materials were provided by NESACS National Chemistry WeekCoordinator, Chris Jaworek-Lopes. David Sittenfeld of the Museum of Science not only donned a Chemistry Ambassador sash and put in volunteer hours at the booth, he also arranged for us to borrow the Museum of Science demo kits that we utilized in addition to the NCW supplies. We had three experiments: sunscreen, surface area and nanosand. The latter was the most popular. I mentioned to booth visitors that the ACS had some very educational nanotech videos on their YouTube channel. When thanked for his time at the booth, Mark Jones (pictured right above next to Jack Driscoll) replied that the experience was 
“surprisingly enjoyable”. Mark Jones acted as a Keynote speaker at the 2013 ACS Central Regional Meeting (CERM) and was volunteered to us by his Dow Chemical colleague, Katie Hunt, 2007 President of the ACS, who knew that we had booked an ACS table at this AAAS event. We had about 350 parents and children visit us on the first day and about 250 on the second day. The audience was primarily K-6 but we did talk to several sophomores about careers in chemistry. One Post Doc mom asked me whether I would make a video to invite her 6 year old son to the Expo the next day. I did that and met her son the next day. On Sunday, Lisa Shatz from Suffolk University, brought a number of EE gadgets including a Mendocino motor driven by a flashlight, solar cells and magnets, a robot, a Gauss meter, a magnet & a tube of iron filings that could beused to demonstrate a magnetic field. We were graced with the most amazing volunteers from the ACS Small Chemical Businesses Division, Northeastern Local Section of ACS (NESACS), Mid-Hudson Local Section of  ACS, Dow Chemical (MI & MA), Suffolk University Department Chairs including a Trustee and Museum of Science Boston (MOS).We couldn't have staffed the six hours each day(Saturday and Sunday) without this team of volunteers: Mukund Chorghade, Jack Driscoll, Chris Gilmore, Mark Jones, Jennifer Maclachlan and Family, George Ruger, Lisa Shatz, DavidSittenfeld, Sonja Strah-Pleynet and Family,Tricia Vickrey and Dennis Walczewski.

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