Iowa State University

Inside Iowa State
March 7, 1997

Science magic at Hilton

by Skip Derra
Iowa students will display their scientific wizardry in Hilton Coliseum March 21 and 22, when the first Iowa State Science and Technology Fair convenes. Several science-based and informational activities will be held throughout the weekend in conjunction with the fair.

"We are extremely pleased to host the science fair at Iowa State," said President Martin Jischke. "The students who will be exhibiting are some of the best young science minds in Iowa and their visit to Iowa State is a unique opportunity to show them some of the more exciting aspects of a research university."

The fair, previously called the Hawkeye Science Fair and held in Des Moines for the past 39 years, is the only general science fair for middle and high school students in Iowa. Students who display their projects have been working on them for nearly a year, said Sande McNabb, professor of plant pathology and forestry and chair of the fair board of directors.

Science project areas are divided broadly into physical and biological sciences. Examples of research topics include the study of caffeine as an insecticide, diet of the gray horned owl and heat output of different types of commercial charcoal.

Public viewing times for the fair are from 1 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Friday, March 21, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 22. An awards ceremony begins at 5 p.m. Saturday in Hilton Coliseum.

Prizes are awarded at the seventh- and eighth-grade levels. High school winners also receive prizes, with the top three receiving scholarships. Also, many topical awards are given by state, federal, university and industrial groups.

Iowa State departments and colleges with displays at the fair include admissions, athletics and the colleges of Family and Consumer Sciences, Engineering, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Education and Agriculture. Iowa State's new solar car, ExCYtor also will be at the fair. Area business exhibitors include Mary Greeley Medical Center, 3M and Monsanto.

There will be tours and demonstrations for participating students, their parents and teachers. These include visits to C2, Iowa State's virtual reality room; the planetarium; Molecular Biology building; the Veterinary Medicine College; Lied Center; Jacobson building; and campus tours.

There also will be seminars -- held in conjunction with the Program for Women in Science and Engineering -- focusing on admissions, alumni, financial aid, the Honors Program and how to build a scholarship resume.

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