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Local News / Education

Saturday, 8 November, 2008 0:29 AM

Over 15,000 students attend 5th Annual YES! Expo at Ford Field

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The YES! Expo was sold-out with more than 15,000 students in attendance. This photo was from the 2006 YES! Expo.

by Garrett Godwin
ggodwin82@yahoo.com

 

DETROIT -- The Ford Field was a packed house on Thursday afternoon -- and it wasn't of a Lions game but of the 5th annual YES! (Youth in Science and Engineering) Expo in front of a sell-out crowd of over 15,000 junior high and high school students. The purpose behind this event is for students to be exposed in the areas that goes beyond medicine in pursuing careers as doctors, nurses, and surgeons. "In our present economy, any hope for the future lies in science, technology, and engineering", states Pete Cattelino, organizer of the Expo for Michigan Tech University, who is also the founding sponsoring university.

Simulations and experiments at The Expo included Girl Scouts of Metro Detroit demonstrating how chemistry relates to everyday life such as cosmetics. For instance, lipstick being made out of melted Vasoline with Hershey's Cocoa mix. Another is making body scrub out of brown sugar and Vasoline, and turning a lemons into a battery, which is consisted of two different metals suspended in an acidic solution: copper and zinc. Both of them work well as they and the lemon's citric acid content will provide the acidic solution. The downside is, though, that batteries such as those won't be able to run a motor or energize most light bulbs -- yet will provide enough energy to dimly light an LED (Light-emitting diode).

FOX Sports Net's Cindy Mir, host of the Emmy-winning Sport Science, gave student demonstrations midway through the Expo that featured how fast a soccer ball can be kicked and how fast a softball can be thrown -- using instruments from her biomedical engineering lab at Wayne State University and computer graphics, and student volunteers.

Other events that followed such as astonant gloves being used to put together, Legos so students can see how hard it is to use them when in space to maneuver things; participating in simulations such as learning to operate construction and aerial equipments; making liquid nitrogen ice cream; manipulating robots; Kellogg representatives showing how to make Rice Krisples, how they package their cereals and sweets, how they put the unopened items inside the cereal boxes, and much more.

More than 85% of YES! Expo partcipants answered that attending it helped give them more understanding of what it means to be an engineer, and 90% said coming to it made decide to further their post-high school education, while 70% stated that the event made them dedicated more to their education.

"Students in America", said Mir, "are falling further and further behind in science and math. But perhaps we can change this trend, turning them on to science by way of sports, showing them that science can be fun."

 

 

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