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Wichita State News

Wichita State to host JASON DAYS for young students

Monday, September 20, 2010

About 525 elementary and middle-school students will participate in “JASON DAYS: Tectonic Fury,” a weeklong science program at Wichita State University, Sept. 27-Oct. 1.

The event is part of National Geographic’s JASON project, a year-round scientific expedition created by explorer, Titanic discoverer and native Wichitan, Robert Ballard.

“JASON brings science alive by exposing students to real-world scientists and work they do in the field through hands-on exploration and discovery,” said Amy Strong, assistant director of Wichita State’s Fairmount Center for Science and Mathematics Education and JASON program manager. “Teachers love the event because of the exposure to science their students get.”

Teachers incorporate the JASON project curriculum, aligned with the National Science Education Standards, in their classrooms throughout the year. Each year WSU hosts JASON DAYS to give students the opportunity to meet active local scientists and apply what they’ve learned in different events.

This year’s program focuses on geology. In the showcase event, students will learn about erosion and weathering using stream tables. In the theater event, WSU geology faculty member Collette Burke, WSU geology graduates Marjorie Noel and Angie Chadd and local scientist Mike Dealy of the Kansas Geological Survey will share with students about their day-to-day jobs and how they prepared for their careers.

“It’s a great learning experience and a lot of fun for the students,” said Strong.

WSU’s participation in the JASON Project is supported financially by senior sponsors Toyota USA Foundation and The Boeing Co. Additional support comes from Excel/Cargill Cares, the Cargill Contributions Committee and the Weyerhaeuser Company Foundation.

The Fairmount College of Liberal Arts and Sciences houses the JASON project and the Fairmount Center for Science and Mathematics Education. Fairmount College offers majors in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences and programs of professional training.

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