Workshops 2019

Find out more about our amazing Workshop Leaders

Chemistry – Fun with Green Polymers: Dr. Parisa Mehrkhodavandi, Kim Bessler, Namrata Jain, & Maria Cleveland

Make your own polymers from chemicals with the guidance of a professor, researcher, and PhD candidates at the University of British Columbia. Assess the different properties of the polymers such as stretchiness and bounciness. Next, have fun with liquid nitrogen! Hint: Ice cream may be involved…

Forensic Science – DNA and Fingerprinting Analysis: Let’s Talk Science

You are a forensic scientist and we want you to solve a murder mystery! A body was found in the washroom of an airplane. There are six suspects of interest. Use DNA analysis, chemical tests, and fingerprinting analysis to help solve the mystery of who done it. Learn how forensic scientists extract DNA and analyze it to figure whose DNA was at the crime scene. Use fingerprinting and a chemical blood test to narrow down the suspects. Put your best detective hat on to help us solve this mystery!

Health – Research in Female Health and an Introduction to Histology: Natasha Orr

Female reproductive and menstrual health is a neglected field due to its taboo natures, although its incredible importance to women’s lives. For example, endometriosis affects 1 in 10 women and results in symptoms like menstrual and sexual pain which can result in multiple negative consequences on a woman’s life, such as missing work or school and lowered self-esteem.

This workshop will provide an overview on research in the field of female reproduction, with a focus on endometriosis. We will take a journey through the life of a graduate student and suggestions will be provided for getting involved in research. An interactive session on histology, looking at tissues through microscopes, will follow the presentation to allow students hands on experience with the field.

Computer Science Processing: Jennifer Dai

Do you want to learn to code? In this workshop, you will get hands-on programming experience by creating an introductory project using Processing! Processing is a programming language focused on graphics and visualizing code. You’ll learn how to use variables, conditions, and loops to create art on your computer screen!

Scientific Reasoning – Fake News and Fresh Science: How to Find & Evaluate Scientific Sources: Hilary Abraham

We will look at some of the ways scientific research is misrepresented and misinterpreted. Participants will practice the skills and tools available to them to evaluate a scientific claim and to find the original research.

Earth Sciences – Water Resources: Aspen Anderson

In this workshop, students will learn about various types of water resources, where they come from, and benefits/drawbacks to using these resources. Students will also explore the concept of shared resources in a mock “Town Hall” meeting. In this activity, each student will play the role of a stakeholder in British Columbia with a need for water. Students will have the chance to state why they deserve to be allotted some of the limited resources and members of the meeting will get to cast their vote to decide how the resources are divided.

Mathematics – Geometry in Telecommunication: Dr. Lily Yen

Participants will use their own sets of compass and straightedge to construct two-dimensional models which mimic how GPS and cell phone towers track a user’s location.

Geological Engineering – Designing and Building Tunnels: Dani Delaloye

Every wonder what goes into designing and building a tunnel?  In this workshop you’ll put on your engineering hat, and delve into the world of geological engineering.  You’ll learn about the consideration that go in to picking a tunnel alignment and design, then test out your skills!

Civil Engineering – What’s in Our Infrastructure?: Linda Cong & Alyssa Hermann

Use your detective skills to find out how the public infrastructure for developments and municipalities get designed. Complete an online scavenger hunt to discover the standards and drawings that Civil Engineers use to design the roads and sewer systems you use every day.

Biology – The Awesome Power of Model Organisms in Genetics: Alyssa Kirlin

Learn about the importance and utility of model organisms in biological research, particularly in genetics, from Alyssa Kirlin, a PhD Candidate at UBC in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology program.

All 3 Parts are one workshop!

Part 1 – Presentation on the common model organisms used in genetics research and some of the key discoveries that they made possible. Participants will also get to examine specimens of a couple of model organisms (yeast, flies).

Part 2 – Participants will get to play a card-based game further exploring model organisms in research. The game also teaches about techniques used in genetics studies, and a little bit about how science is conducted in the academic system.

Part 3 – A common technique used in genetics research is the extraction of DNA from cells and tissues. Using bananas, participants will get to try extracting DNA themselves using basic methods.

Biology –  Immune System vs Infection: Christina Michalski

In this workshop, you will learn about the daily battle between our amazing immune system and infections. Why are we not constantly sick? And what happens when we do get infected? In this session, we will simulate the intricate barriers setup by the body to defend against microbes. We will learn how these defences are exploited by a microbe, and how research can help in strengthening our immune defences.