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Students Invited to Explore the Worlds

2/21/2008 —

Explore the Worlds of Engineering, Science, and Information Sciences and Technology on Saturday, March 8, when Penn State York opens its doors to middle and high school students.  The program, from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., offers a variety of hands-on activities for students including: “Creating Web Pages with ‘Style’” with Suzanne Gladfelter, senior instructor in information sciences and technology; “Be a Crime Scene Investigator” with Robert Farrell, associate professor of biology; “The Colorful World of Chemistry” with Andy Landis, instructor in chemistry; and “The Legacy of Colonial Mill Ponds” with Matt Hoch, assistant professor of biology.  Stay an hour or the entire time.  Other topics include “Phun with Physics” with Kip Trout, senior instructor in physics; “Hacker for a Day” with Larry Newcomer, associate professor of information sciences and technology; and “Efficient Bridge Design” with Chuck Gaston, assistant professor of engineering.  Penn State York faculty will lead students in a variety of activities that introduce them to science, engineering, and information sciences and technology.

Beginning at 2 p.m., watch the breaking of the bridges during the Great Bridge Building Competition being held in conjunction with Explore the Worlds.   The event, sponsored by the Lincoln Chapter of the Pennsylvania Society for Professional Engineers, offers high school students a chance to construct a bridge and then test it to see how strong it is.   Bridge kits are still available and can be picked up at the Penn State York Admissions Office; C. S. Davidson, 38 North Duke Street, York; or Penn State, The Lancaster Center, 1383 Arcadia Road, Lancaster.  Completed bridges must be on campus by 1:30 p.m.   For additional details on this event please contact Tim Koppenhaver at 845-4805. This program is free and open to the public. 

For more information on Explore the Worlds, visit the Web at www2.yk.psu.edu/explore/ or call 717-771-4040 or 1-800-776-6227.

Schedule and Workshop Descriptions  

9:00 a.m.             Workshop Registration

10 a.m. - 1 p.m.   Workshops

1 - 2 p.m.             Complimentary Lunch

2 p.m.                  Bridge Building Competition 
Watch or be a Participant!   Pre-registration for bridge competition is required.  

”Be a Crime Scene Investigator”
Robert Farrell, associate professor of biology
10:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m.

The world of forensics is becoming more sophisticated each day.  The techniques and methods have not only revolutionized the criminal justice system, but have also captured the imagination of a very large television viewing audience.  In this workshop, students will have an opportunity to learn about the standard techniques and equipment commonly used to solve crimes; some of the myths surrounding the discipline will also be dispelled. Questions about Penn State's new forensics major will be answered.  Workshops include:

“Efficient Bridge Design”
Chuck Gaston, assistant professor of engineering
10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Using only "Lego-type" blocks and a limited amount of masking tape, design and build a bridge which will be weighed and then tested to destruction.  The measure of efficiency is maximum load supported/bridge weight. 

“Creating Web Pages with ‘Style’”
Suzanne Gladfelter, senior instructor in information sciences and technology
11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m.

Modern Web sites incorporate W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) standards-based design to separate style from structure. These Web sites use XHTML (eXtensible Hyper Text Markup Language) and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) to implement accessible Web pages.  In this hands-on, “make and take” lab, we will learn some basic Web design principles and modify a simple W3C standards-compliant Web page.

“Hacker for a Day”
Larry Newcomer, associate professor of information sciences and technology
11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 1:00 p.m.

Explore the tactics, tools, and techniques that real hackers use to penetrate systems.

“The Colorful World of Chemistry”
Andy Landis, instructor in chemistry
10:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m.

When atoms combine to form compounds, colorful and sometimes violent reactions can take place. The nature of these reactions will be shown through a series of hands-on demonstrations involving the colorful chemicals that compose fireworks and the explosive reaction of hydrogen and oxygen.  

“The Legacy of Colonial Mill Ponds: Sediment and Nutrient Pollution from Our Past"
Matt Hoch, assistant professor of biology
10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Using a flowing stream model and eroded stream bank monolith, Hoch will demonstrate the legacy of colonial mill dams in causing sediment and nutrient pollution today. Mill ponds trapped sediment for 150 – 200 years. When they breached in the late 1800s to early 1900s, they began the massive release of eroding soil that has contributed to the decline of the Chesapeake Bay Ecosystem and its commercial and recreational fisheries today. Opportunities will be available for workshop attendees to experiment with stream flow and erosion in the stream table after each demonstration.

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