Outreach/Education – High School
Nebraska Math Day
We had the opportunity to talk with 1700 of the best and brightest high school students from across Nebraska in the span of a few hours at the 27th annual Nebraska Math Day in November. Our booth featured many activities about STEM/Nano so high school students could get an idea of what UNL has to offer in the area of nanoscience, such as carbon nanotubes, self-assembly and graphene research.
Nano Goes International
We were very excited to travel internationally and share information and activities about nanoscience at SenEcole – Fete de la Science, a 3 day exhibition in Senegal, Africa. Over 300 students/visitors explored nanokits about Thin Films, Invisibility, Liquid Crystals, Nano Sand, Transmission Electron Microscopes, and 3D Imaging. Dr. Sidy Ndao, a NCMN faculty member, made presentations during the event which supports future African engineers & scientists.
Phis's World Comic Books
Phis’s World, a comic book series for middle school and high school aged students, as well as the general public who are interested in science, provides a creative way to stimulate learning. Dr. Xia Hong at the UNL Department of Physics & Astronomy is partnering with NCMN and Lincoln’s local schools to raise awareness about physics and general science. Weaving science principles with the daily challenges and questions Phis and her sister Chemi face with personal development, habits, caring and other issues, readers are given a fun way to relate science to real-life situations. See more about this series at http://www.physics.unl.edu/~xhong/hong/Phis/PhisHome.html and take a short survey after reading the comics.
Nano and the Nebraska Robotics Expo
The annual Nebraska Robotics Expo provided a unique venue for NCMN to share what’s happening in the Nano/STEM areas to Expo participants, spectators, and parents. Nebraska youth were given demonstrations and interactive activities about opportunities and careers in chemistry, physics, and engineering.
NCMN Nanoscience Camp Partnership
Fifty 10th-grade students from Grand Island and Omaha high schools participated in a Nanoscience Camp sponsored by Epscor and held in July on the UNL campus. Part of the camp included tours of nano related research in NCMN faculty labs and facility tours of NCMN equipment. Students were a part of the Nebraska College Prep Academy, a science/math focus program that encourages high school graduation and pursuit of a post-secondary degree.
Native American Youth Leadership Camp
As part of a leadership camp, NCMN worked with MRSEC to share a variety of fun nanoscience activities to middle and high school youth at Innovation Campus. A ‘nanostation’ provided interesting demos and activities about nano and nature for student exploration which included information about DNA, light, self-assembly, and piezoelectricity.
Women in Science Conference
The Nebraska Women in Science annual conference was held this year at the Embassy Suites Lincoln Downtown and attended by over 100 high school women and their teachers from across Nebraska. Our informational booth provided hands on activities, brochures and an opportunity to visit with UNL faculty about STEM/nanoscience and science-related careers at the University.
NanoPhysics High School Camp
NCMN partnered with the Upward Bound program to bring a summer NanoPhysics camp to 10th & 11th grade students from Lincoln high schools. The camp included tours of nano related research in NCMN facilities and hands on activities about the ever growing area of Nanoelectronics. Topics covered during the 4 day event covered Squishy Circuits, Supercapacitors, Solar Cell Technology, Graphene, LED’s, Batteries and how these can be incorporated into electrical circuits.
Junior/Senior High Tours
• Homeschool Tours Offered
Homeschool groups from across Nebraska are learning about nanoscience through tours and hands on experiences NCMN provides when they visit. A homeschool group of students and parents from Nebraska City gained valuable information about nanofabrication and characterization equipment, the history and application of nanoscience, and experienced interactive tools used in nanotechnology.
The Nebraska Center for Materials and Nanoscience (NCMN) hosted a STEM summer program for high school internships again this year! Faculty from Chemistry, Physics, and Engineering provided opportunities for high school students to work in their research labs for 8 weeks with the help of a graduate student mentor to guide and train in research techniques. Students present their research results at UNL’s Summer Research Program Symposium each August.