Atlanta: Connections in Science was held at the Fernbank Science Center in Atlanta, Georgia. The scientists discussed their own connections to Atlanta through their work and life. Each presented a slideshow about how they decided to pursue their profession before discussing as a panel their dreams as children, the future of NASA, and what's next for their career. The scientists encouraged students to do what they love and that science careers can lead to many different options - not just those in science. The program was moderated by Jocelyn Dorsey, host of WSB-TV's "People to People." The Fernbank Science Center was one of ScienceMakers' science centers partners in 2012.
The participating scientists included:
- Ralph Etienne-Cummings, roboticist, Johns Hopkins University
- John Hall, chemist, Morehouse College
- Joycelyn Harrison, Program Officer, Airforce Office of Scientific Research
- Ayanna Howard, roboticist, Georgia Tech
- Woodrow Whitlow, Jr., Associate Administrator, NASA
During the day programs on Friday and Saturday morning, each scientist was paired with a Fernbank instructor to complete activities and answer questions with students from Fernbank's Scientific Tools & Techniques (STT) and Science, Engineering, Mathematics & Aerospace Academy (SEMAA) programs.
The Scientific Tools and Techniques Program (STT) is a semester-long course designed to familiarize students with the tools and techniques of scientific inquiry. STT students practice problem-solving skills utilizing a fully integrated science curriculum. Through laboratory and field work, students explore all aspects of science, gaining a better understanding and a greater appreciation for the scientific process. The program is free of charge, and is open to 9th grade students enrolled in the DeKalb County School System. Read more about the program at their website.
The SEMAA program at Fernbank Science Center is sponsored by a grant from NASA Education. Students in grades kindergarten through 12th grade are eligible to participate in this free science academic program designed to increase interest and participation in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. Read more about the program at their website.