Even in a virtual format, the Science Academy helped grade 12 students experience life as a UWindsor student.
Now in its seventh year but its first online, the outreach program featured presentations from departments across the Faculty of Science, engaging activities, a science-art challenge, chats with undergraduates, and a showcase of student experiences including undergraduate research.
Nida Almas, a secondary student entering her senior year at Vincent Massey Secondary School, said the experience helped her narrow down the options for post-secondary education.
“The virtual presentations, activities, and challenges were informative and allowed me to explore the departments, resources, and experiences offered at UWindsor,” said Almas. “Upon the completion of Science Academy, I had a better understanding of myself and my preferences in regard to my post-secondary education.”
Her schoolmate Sona Regonda agreed.
“The activities, discussions, and lessons truly enlightened me and opened my eyes to a whole new world of possibilities,” Regonda said.
She was part of a local team sponsored by the Faculty of Science that placed second at the Youreka Canada National Symposium. The resulting research is being published in the Canadian Science Fair Journal.
The Science Academy also introduced attendees to UWindsor projects on COVID-19 being undertaken by undergraduate and graduate student researchers.
“Science Academy provided me with the opportunity to teach and discuss COVID-19 related research with very engaging young people,” says Cory Coba, a doctoral student of chemistry who presented his research on the development of novel COVID-19 diagnostic tests. “I think initiatives such as this are critical to increasing scientific literacy and ultimately helping individuals make more informed, science-based decisions when appropriate.”
Science Academy participants earned a certificate of completion and had the opportunity to compete for one of 10 entrance scholarships to a Faculty of Science program.—Karthik Baskaran