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Science Buddies Press Releases 2011



Science Buddies Research Leads to Increased Accessibility of Science Education Resources


December 22, 2011, CARMEL, CA—Thanks to user interface research conducted over the last twelve months, Science Buddies' website and free science, technology, engineering, and math resources continue to evolve as the K-12 nonprofit seeks to meet the diverse needs of its more than ten million annual users. Forthcoming site updates will offer students and teachers enhanced access to its library of more than 1,000 Project Ideas.

Funded by the Northrop Grumman Foundation, the purpose of Science Buddies' in-depth user interface research was to better understand how students and teachers interact with Science Buddies' online materials. "A fundamental goal of our web site is to make science project resources more accessible to students and teachers," explains Claire Hubbard, a Science Buddies product design engineer, "so discovering what works and what needs improvement is critical."

Research Conducted in the Washington, D.C. Area

In two separate trips to Washington, D.C., Hubbard worked directly with science teachers in elementary, middle, and high schools. Hubbard's initial trip, in December of 2010, was a fact-finding mission. Says Hubbard, "I wanted to discover which Science Buddies resources teachers are using, what issues they have with the site, and what new or additional resources they might want that we don't currently provide."

Two findings particularly struck Hubbard when working with Ballou High School Science Department Chair, Megan Patterson. Hubbard saw first-hand that to better serve the needs of students from lower socio-economic levels, additional filtering of Project Ideas is important. "Students need to sort ideas not only on area of interest, but also on project length and availability of materials," notes Hubbard. "Offering additional methods for viewing and searching Science Buddies' extensive list of Project Ideas will better help students find a project that they can complete successfully."

Hubbard also discovered that teachers often try to adapt Science Buddies Project Ideas for use in the classroom because longer, take-home projects have not always proven successful in schools where students don't have strong at-home support. Shorter, classroom-appropriate versions of Science Buddies Project Ideas will help support these teachers and enable greater opportunities for hands-on learning.

Web Site Enhancements to Make Materials Accessible to More Students

Based on Hubbard's initial research, Science Buddies designers explored possible enhancements to the Science Buddies website. "All students need access to quality science education materials," says Hubbard, "and this research helps us remove barriers for students in more difficult circumstances. Northrop Grumman, which also sponsors the Astronomy Area of Interest at Science Buddies, understands the importance of this work."

Hubbard shared her findings and ideas with teachers on a second trip to Washington, D.C. Positive feedback led Science Buddies web engineers to begin implementing new features on the Science Buddies website (www.sciencebuddies.org). A number of Classroom Activities have been developed by Science Buddies team of staff scientists and launched on the website in recent months, including, Discovering the Colors Behind Afterimages, Measuring Heart Rate with Your Own Stethoscope, and Modeling Blood Flow with Straws. Additional Classroom Activities are scheduled for release in the coming year.

Other updates stemming from Hubbard's research are projected to be live at the end of the year. Says Hubbard, "we look forward to making these enhancements available to students and teachers. It will be a great way for Science Buddies to start a new year."

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit software and content developer that builds online communities, resources, and tools for informal STEM education. Science Buddies is best known for its award-winning, 15,000-page website (www.sciencebuddies.org) and its library of more than 1,000 Project Ideas (scientist-authored outlines that guide students in doing hands-on science projects). Nearly 10 million K-12 students, parents, and teachers utilized Science Buddies resources during 2010, a number equal to 18% of the entire U.S. K-12 student population. In April 2011, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the journal Science awarded the Science Buddies website the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education. The American Library Association, the Parents' Choice Foundation, and the SciLinks program of the National Science Teachers Association also recommend Science Buddies. The mission of Science Buddies is to help children from all walks of life build their literacy in science and technology so they can become productive and engaged citizens in the 21st century.

About Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in aerospace, electronics, information systems, and technical services to government and commercial customers worldwide. For more information about Northrop Grumman, visit www.northropgrumman.com/

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Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Science Buddies Receives Motorola Solutions Foundation Innovation Generation Grant to Support Math and Science Education


Science Buddies Receives Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Grant

September 13, 2011, CARMEL, CA—Science Buddies is honored to announce it has received $145,000.00 as part of the Innovation Generation grant program from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, the charitable arm of Motorola Solutions Inc. The grant will support a Science Buddies user interface study of special student populations and will enable Science Buddies to serve 500,000 students, teachers, and parents with the core resources and programs available on www.sciencebuddies.org. The grant will also enable Science Buddies to explore collaborative STEM mentoring solutions with partner organizations, The Harris Foundation (Texas) and Louis Armstrong Middle School (New York), to support and facilitate year-round science learning.

The Motorola Solutions Foundation's Innovation Generation program is designed to inspire students to learn about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Innovation Generation funding equips students with the skills essential to both their lives today and their future success through funding, employee volunteers, and intra-grantee collaboration. This year, the program provided $5.5 million to K-12 programs across the U.S., including Science Buddies, to support hands-on, innovative after-school programs, science and math clubs, teacher training and mentoring programs.

"We are excited about the programs the Innovation Generation grant will enable us to develop and test with partners like The Harris Foundation," says Ken Hess, Science Buddies Founder and President. "The support from the Motorola Solutions Foundation enables us to focus fresh energy on creating solutions to support STEM education for specialized groups. We know these solutions can make a dramatic difference in student success with—and enthusiasm for—the sciences."

Leveraging its successful model for online mentoring, Science Buddies will build and customize online mentoring forums, enabling participants in partner-sponsored programs to continue their science inquiry and mentorship throughout the school year. Science Buddies will also partner with Louis Armstrong Middle School to help student participants in a science fair mentoring program that has both school year and summer components. These innovative mentoring programs will serve students in Queens, New York and in the Edinburg and McAllen, Texas area, where resources will be used to assist with ongoing mentoring between students and summer camp counselors from the University of Texas-Pan American.

"The future of American innovation depends on a diverse pipeline of critical thinkers who are well versed in STEM principles," said Matt Blakely, director of the Motorola Solutions Foundation. "Through the Innovation Generation program, we are thrilled to partner with programs like Science Buddies to provide students and teachers with the necessary tools to explore their STEM interests and pursue innovation."

Innovation Generation is a part of Motorola Solutions' larger commitment to engaging youth in STEM education. Beyond funding, Science Buddies will receive ongoing support from Motorola Solutions employee volunteers, who will act as mentors, tutors, and experts in STEM careers, which utilizes the expertise of Motorola Solutions' workforce to inspire the next generation of inventors. Science Buddies also now is part of the Innovation Generation network, where it can create vital connections with hundreds of other organizations with the common vision to make a greater impact on STEM education.

Founded in 2007, the Innovation Generation Grants have awarded more than $25.5 million to STEM programs nationwide. For more information on the grant program, please visit www.motorolasolutions.com/giving. For additional information on Science Buddies please visit www.sciencebuddies.org.

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit software and content developer that builds online communities, resources, and tools for informal STEM education. Science Buddies is best known for its award-winning, 15,000-page website (www.sciencebuddies.org) and its library of more than 1,000 Project Ideas (scientist-authored outlines that guide students in doing hands-on science projects). Nearly 10 million K-12 students, parents, and teachers utilized Science Buddies resources during 2010, a number equal to 18% of the entire U.S. K-12 student population. In April 2011, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the journal Science awarded the Science Buddies website the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education. The American Library Association, the Parents' Choice Foundation, and the SciLinks program of the National Science Teachers Association also recommend Science Buddies. The mission of Science Buddies is to help children from all walks of life build their literacy in science and technology so they can become productive and engaged citizens in the 21st century.

About Motorola Solutions Foundation

The Motorola Solutions Foundation is the charitable and philanthropic arm of Motorola Solutions. With employees located around the globe, Motorola Solutions seeks to benefit the communities where it operates. The company achieves this by making strategic grants, forging strong community partnerships and fostering innovation. The Motorola Solutions Foundation focuses its funding on public safety, disaster relief, employee programs and education, especially science, technology, engineering and math programming. For more information on Motorola Solutions Corporate and Foundation giving, visit www.motorolasolutions.com/giving.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Science Buddies Launches Summer Fellows Program


July 18, 2011, CARMEL, CA—Science Buddies has launched its first Summer Science Fellows program, giving top science students the opportunity to experience the world of science education outside of the lab. This summer, six recent high school graduates, all of whom were finalists in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), will be working hands-on with Science Buddies in a variety of roles, including project testing, volunteer outreach, and market research and analysis. They will also work collaboratively on a special group project.

The following students, who have a variety of scientific interests, were chosen to be Science Fellows in the inaugural year of the program:

Says Kenneth Hess, Science Buddies Founder and President, "We know that ISEF competitors have a strong work ethic and great time management skills. I know [these students] will be able to hit the ground running and do great work for us over the summer." Their efforts, expertise, and enthusiasm for science will help Science Buddies further its commitment to K-12 science education.

Science Buddies is excited about the Summer Science Fellows Program and hopes that this first group of interns continues to be a part of the Science Buddies community in coming years.

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies, a 501c3 public charity, is the leading award-winning non-profit science fair "how-to" resource for K-12 students, teachers, and parents. With scientist-authored educational content covering 30 fields of science and engineering and a website created and run by scientists and engineers, Science Buddies supports serious scientific inquiry by providing tools for project selection, as well as step-by-step instruction and support from scientists and experts on setting up, managing, and monitoring a project and recording the results. Science Buddies helps students learn more, get support, save time and get inspired.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Science Buddies Showcases Winning Essays from Bio-Rad 2010-2011 Scholarship Competition


Are you concerned about the enormous amount of pollution in our environment? Dante West is, and his passion for environmental science earned him a Bio-Rad scholarship!

June 29, 2011, CARMEL, CA—Bio-Rad recently announced winners in their annual scholarship program, a community-focused initiative open to students local to the Bio-Rad headquarters in Hercules, California. The scholarship provides financial assistance to students who have a passion for science and are pursuing higher education to further their science career goals. This year's winners received either a $2,500 or a $1,000 scholarship. Science Buddies is excited to feature the winning essays on the Science Buddies website.

Dante West, winner of the $2500 Ron Mardigian Memorial Scholarship, recently graduated from Benicia High School in Benicia, California. His interest in science stems from an early fascination with marine biology and the conservation of reef systems around the world. His curiosity for science has evolved into a developing interest in biotechnology, particularly in strategies for modifying the genomes of certain organisms to better adapt them to our changing environment. As he discovered, there is a common element to his two main interests: environmental sustainability.

His goal as a future environmental scientist is to find ways to "lower the carbon dioxide levels in the environment to provide for cooler earth temperatures and cleaner air." In his essay, he recounts taking a course in biotechnology sponsored by Bio-Rad instead of the AP Biology class at his high school. He found the hands-on experience of performing procedures like PCR extremely valuable for his future because he can now "detect mutations, recombine, find out who the daddy is, and solve a crime." To learn more about his strong commitment to "new, more environmentally conscious ways of living," read Dante's complete essay.

Sara Konopelski, winner of a $1000 scholarship, recently graduated from Las Lomas High School in Walnut Creek, CA. Her essay focuses on the "chameleon nature" of science and how science is constantly changing with the introduction of new technologies that impact our lives. She finds the ability of science to "surmount all expectations" to be one of the characteristics of science that make it "magic." Sara stresses the importance of beginning science education at an early age—exposing students to experiments that "capture any child's imagination" and explaining the scientific concepts behind why these experiments work. She goes on to write that "scientists today who enjoy and take pride in their work need to resolutely take a stand to show others that they are proud of what they partake in every day." From Sara's perspective, it's not enough to simply love science; it's important for scientists to share their enthusiasm for science with others. Read Sara's full essay to learn more about her ideas.

Science Buddies congratulates both winners and thanks Sara, Dante, and Bio-Rad for allowing Science Buddies to publish the winning essays.

About Bio-Rad

Bio-Rad is a manufacturer and distributor of products for life science research and clinical diagnostics. They are renowned worldwide among hospitals, universities, research institutions, and biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Science Buddies and University of California's Lick Observatory Researchers Announce Astronomy Contest Winners


June 24, 2011, CARMEL, CA—Science Buddies and two researchers from the University of California's Lick Observatory, Dr. Aaron Romanowsky and Prof. Jean Brodie, have chosen winners in the Science Buddies–Lick Observatory Astronomy Contest.

Judges Impressed by High Quality of Student Projects

Students in grades K-12 entered the contest by designing their own astronomy project or completing one of Science Buddies' Astronomy Project Ideas. Judges were looking for projects exhibiting imagination, scientific thought, thoroughness, skill, and clarity. "We were thrilled with the caliber and creativity of the science projects entered in the contest," revealed Sandra Slutz, Science Buddies' lead scientist. "It certainly made the judging harder, but it is great to know we have an enthusiastic and capable next generation of astronomers on the horizon."

Judges named these students and their projects superior:

Original Project Idea, Grades 6-8

Original Project Idea Runner Up, Grades 6-8

Original Project Idea, Grades 9-12

Science Buddies Project Idea, Grades 6-8

Telescopes and Cash Prizes Awarded, Ideas Published Online

The four top student winners each received up to $300 in cash and a Celestron telescope. The three winners in the Original Project Idea categories are being invited to publish a version of their project in the Science Buddies Project Idea Library, perhaps inspiring other students to explore the fascinating world of astronomy.

Five other student winners were chosen at random from all entrants. The following Random Entry winners each received $50 and a Limited Edition Celestron 50th Anniversary FirstScope Telescope:

Teachers involved in all winning contest submissions, including Random Entry Winners, received an equal value cash prize.

Contest Meets Goal of Inspiring Students

The Science Buddies–Lick Observatory Astronomy Contest was a first for Science Buddies. When Science Buddies announced the contest in November 2010, Slutz observed, "this is an exciting time in astronomy. Science Buddies and our partners at Lick Observatory and Celestron all realize that the next generation of astronomers may reveal some of the deepest secrets of space, and we're excited to give them a head start in their explorations." In the end, the contest achieved its purpose: motivating students to look "beyond" and to discover more about astronomy and scientific investigation.

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies, a 501c3 public charity, is the leading award-winning non-profit science fair "how-to" resource for K-12 students, teachers, and parents. With scientist-authored educational content covering 30 fields of science and engineering and a website created and run by scientists and engineers, Science Buddies supports serious scientific inquiry by providing tools for project selection, as well as step-by-step instruction and support from scientists and experts on setting up, managing, and monitoring a project and recording the results. Science Buddies helps students learn more, get support, save time and get inspired.

About UCO Lick

The University of California Observatories (UCO) is a Multi-Campus Research Unit of the University of California that operates on behalf of the astronomers at the 10 UC campuses. UCO's headquarters are at the University of California, Santa Cruz campus, with extensive technical facilities, a business office, telescope, and support facilities at the Lick Observatory on Mt. Hamilton. Dr. Aaron Romanowsky, member of the SAGES and Planetary Nebula Spectrograph collaborations, conducts research on structure and dynamics of galaxies and other astrophysical systems at UCO Lick.

About Celestron, LLC.

Celestron, is a leading designer, manufacturer and importer of high-quality optical products including computerized and non-computerized telescopes and related accessories, binoculars, spotting scopes and microscopes. Since manufacturing its first telescope in 1960, Celestron has grown to become one of the world's leading telescope makers and enjoys brand-name recognition among serious amateur astronomers for superior optics, outstanding design, and innovative technology. Celestron's innovative products continue to receive numerous industry and consumer media accolades, adding to an already impressive list that includes awards for product innovation from Reader's Digest, Popular Science, PC Magazine, Popular Mechanics, the Consumer Electronics Association and more. Celestron sells and markets its products worldwide through a variety of specialty retail outlets and international distributors. Celestron is a privately held company with corporate offices and manufacturing facilities, in Torrance, CA.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Symantec Leads the Way for Corporate Employees to Help Support STEM Education


Symantec Employees Serve as Volunteer Judges at Recent Science Fairs

June 8, 2011, Carmel, CA—This spring, Silicon Valley-based Symantec Corporation encouraged employees to take an active role in fostering student interest in STEM careers, especially those in computer science. As part of a new company initiative to get employees involved in supporting K-12 science, technology, and engineering, Symantec leaders volunteered as science fair judges at several prominent fairs in California, including the Synopsys Silicon Valley Science & Technology Challenge, the Greater San Diego Science & Engineering Fair, the California State Science Fair, and the prestigious Intel International Science and Engineering Festival (ISEF).

Celebrating the value of hands-on learning and reinforcing that science projects and science fairs highlight "learning by doing," Symantec volunteer judges met with students, got an inside look at the inspiring caliber of research being conducted by top students, and helped support important state and local fairs by being part of the judging process. The success of these fairs often depends upon both financial and volunteer support from the community and corporate sponsors.

Encouraging individual student success and the value of participating regardless of blue ribbons, volunteers took mobile photos of projects they personally found exciting or interesting—whether the project was an award winner or not. Volunteers used cell phones to take photos and sent them to Science Buddies to be uploaded and shared with the Science Buddies community on Facebook. In addition, some judges helped test a prototype of a Science Buddies iPhone app called "Science Fair Reporter." This app, made available for beta testing specifically for Symantec volunteer judges, enables photos to be taken at science fairs and immediately uploaded to a gallery on the Science Buddies website.

Science Buddies' new volunteer portal makes it easy for sponsor and partner companies to donate time and expertise by helping complete convenient, short-term "micro-tasks." These tasks range from helping test or edit a new project to guest-authoring materials on emerging areas of science. Volunteering at a science fair requires a significant commitment of time, as well as the ability to devote one to two days on-site at the fair. Science Buddies was honored to partner with Symantec on this unique employee engagement project and looks forward to helping other corporate volunteers find ways to support STEM education and resources.

Symantec Foundation sponsors the development of Science Buddies Project Ideas and resources in the area of Computer Science and Internet Safety.

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies, a 501c3 public charity, is the leading award-winning non-profit science fair "how-to" resource for K-12 students, teachers, and parents. With scientist-authored educational content covering 30 fields of science and engineering and a website created and run by scientists and engineers, Science Buddies supports serious scientific inquiry by providing tools for project selection, as well as step-by-step instruction and support from scientists and experts on setting up, managing, and monitoring a project and recording the results. Science Buddies helps students learn more, get support, save time and get inspired.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org

 




Science Buddies Founder and President Recognized as 'Volunteer of the Decade'


A Retrospective Look at Ken Hess' Philanthropic Contribution to Science Literacy as His Award-Winning Nonprofit Turns Ten

May 18, 2011, Carmel, CA—Today, the employees of Science Buddies surprised founder Ken Hess by giving him an award created in his honor: "Volunteer of the Decade." Almost ten years ago, Ken Hess turned a parental observation into an award-winning web-based suite of tools and resources that have made a difference in the lives of millions of students, teachers, and parents. In those ten years, Ken has contributed thousands of volunteer hours envisioning, building, testing, and leading the organization and its small staff in the creation of a nonprofit that serves nearly 10 million unique visitors a year, offers more than 1000+ scientist-vetted Project Ideas, and provides resources to support students, teachers, and families with every step of science and engineering projects.

As a parent, Ken enjoyed mentoring his own school-age daughter when she did a science fair project, and he realized that such a project can be an extremely valuable learning experience, one that involves not only science and math, but also research, time management, communication, and other skills. At the same time, he recognized that many students lack the resources and support they need to get the maximum educational benefit from a science fair project.

Ken drew on his combined expertise in engineering, design, and online community-building to come up with a solution. That solution was Science Buddies, an ever-growing suite of Project Ideas, resources, tools, and information that support science literacy, make it easier for students to locate projects they will enjoy—and that are appropriate and scientifically sound—and encourage students and families to explore areas of science and to consider further education and careers in scientific fields.

As Science Buddies approaches its ten-year milestone, the staff of Science Buddies wanted to do something special for the one donor and volunteer who has given more to the organization than any other single person or organization in its history: Ken Hess. Ken's devotion and selfless, unpaid dedication to supporting, fostering, and enabling science education are a contribution that merits a "Volunteer of the Decade" honor. The science community, too, recently recognized the service Ken has engineered with Science Buddies. In April 2011, Science and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) gave Science Buddies the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education (SPORE), a prestigious award that recognizes the best in online resources. In addition to acknowledging the importance of Science Buddies for the K-12 community, the SPORE award highlights the critical positioning of Science Buddies as a conduit between the research community and "tomorrow's young scientists."

According to Bruce Alberts, editor-in-chief of Science, "Science Buddies builds a remarkable bridge between inquisitive students who want access to current research and scientists who want to conduct outreach for their own projects. Scientists hope to inspire these students to become future colleagues."

The impact of Ken's involvement with Science Buddies is one felt by everyone who visits the site—every teacher who uses a resource to help supplement class curriculum; every student who takes the Topic Selection Wizard survey to find an engaging project; every family member who visits the Ask an Expert forum for advice and support at any stage of a student's science or engineering project. And for those who know and work with Ken day to day, his presence, leadership, determination, and commitment are a constant source of inspiration.

The staff of Science Buddies recognizes and applauds the efforts, vision, and philanthropic spirit Ken has brought to the company—and to K-12 science education. On behalf of everyone whom Science Buddies has ever helped, the staff of Science Buddies sincerely thanks Ken Hess, Science Buddies' "Volunteer of the Decade."




What fuels will we use in 30 years? How will we treat and cure diseases?


As Kids' Science Fair Projects Focus on the Future, Non-profit ScienceBuddies.org Helps Teach Sound Research

May 9, 2011, Carmel, CA—Science Fairs are daunting competitions filled with intelligent "children" performing challenging projects and legitimate research. Yet even students who can research alternative fuels or analyze bacterial microbes need guidance on their science projects. ScienceBuddies.org, a non-profit organization serving nearly 10 million students annually, offers free help in all aspects of science fair competition.

Tens of thousands of students compete in local science fairs annually. And this week, 1,500 winning students from around the world will proudly display their research at the 2011 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). Science Buddies' team of experts provides valuable insight to students—no matter the level of competition.

Students performing advanced projects need advice on methodologies and insight into interpreting results. Two years ago, sophomore Christina Wang began performing bacteriology research for her science fair. She developed a mentoring relationship with Donna Hardy, a microbiologist and volunteer in Science Buddies' Ask an Expert forum. As a junior, Christina extended her research and worked on detecting biofilm-inhibiting metabolites in four bacteria species. Hardy provided research guidance and assistance with biotechnology lab procedures that were critical to Wang's success. At last year's Intel ISEF competition, Wang received a coveted 2nd-place Grand Award in Microbiology.

"Science Buddies nurtures a passion for science, inspiring students in their areas of interest and connecting them with professional researchers and engineers who want to instruct the next generation of scientists," said Kenneth Hess, founder and president of Science Buddies. ScienceBuddies.org is so successful at engaging K-12 students that it was just honored as a recipient of the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education.

Media Contact:
Contact Jayme Burke
jayme@sciencebuddies.org
+1-925-736-2696




Kids Explore Alternative Fuel Sources and Sequence the DNA of Living Organisms with ScienceBuddies.org


Science Honors Science Buddies with Prestigious "Science Prize for Online Resources in Education"

April 28, 2011, Carmel, CA—A high school student explores fuels of the future by using mud to build a microbial fuel cell. A 12-year-old using tools for sequencing DNA discovers a plant genome that hasn't yet been documented. Could these be the scientists of tomorrow? That's the hope of non-profit ScienceBuddies.org, an organization that is actively engaging students in hands-on science.

Because of its success at drawing students into deeper scientific interest and exploration, the site was just awarded the Science Prize for Online Resources in Education by the journal Science. Bruce Alberts, editor-in-chief, said, "Science Buddies builds a remarkable bridge between inquisitive students who want access to current research and scientists who want to conduct outreach for their own projects. Scientists hope to inspire these students to become future colleagues."

Science Buddies attracted 9.8 million unique visitors in 2010, including students and teachers from across the country whose enthusiasm for science was nurtured through online access to hands-on projects, guidance from volunteer scientists, and classroom tools for a variety of disciplines. Kenneth Hess, founder and president of Science Buddies, said, "We've developed personalized learning tools to help students select a topic and give them a framework for projects; the brain power to succeed comes from the kids."

Science Buddies features 1,000+ project ideas ranging from everyday topics such as food science to advanced projects in genetics, engineering, and medicine. Its Topic Selection Wizard questions students about their everyday interests and directs them to topics they enjoy, igniting their passion for learning.

Science Buddies also partners with well-known academic institutions to make cutting-edge research accessible to K-12 students. "A few years ago, I began researching renewable energy technology at MIT," said Dr. Elizabeth R. Young. "This high-level work requires equipment and materials costing tens of thousands of dollars. Now through Science Buddies, we've created a similar experiment that students can perform in their own kitchens. These 'kids' are exploring catalysts for splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen, at the same time becoming passionate about developing alternative fuels for their generation."

Science Buddies' mission is to help students build literacy in science and technology so they can become productive and engaged citizens in the 21st century.

See Science Buddies: Advancing Informal Science Education (essay by Kenneth L. Hess, Courtney J. Corda, and Kristina M. Lanese in Science, April 2011)

Media Contact:
Contact Jayme Burke
jayme@sciencebuddies.org
+1-925-736-2696




Amgen Foundation Grant Supports Science Buddies' Life Sciences' Development

February 15, 2011, Carmel, CA—The Amgen Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Amgen, a leading biotechnology company, has made a grant to support Science Buddies' free web-based resources and science project ideas for inspiration and guidance in selecting and conducting science projects. The programs are aimed at reaching at least 125,000 K-12 students, teachers, and parents. The Amgen Foundation's support will enable Science Buddies to continue the development and improvement of engaging science project ideas and content, especially in the area of life sciences. Science Buddies' project ideas in areas like human health, biology, and biotechnology put emerging science into the hands of interested students, giving them an experimental path that brings cutting-edge science to a level appropriate for K-12 exploration and discussion.

Amgen Foundation's grant will also enable Science Buddies to conduct regional outreach in Cambridge, MA and the San Francisco Bay Area, CA, which are both Amgen site locations. Regional outreach helps Science Buddies continue to build awareness among teachers, students, and families about Science Buddies' free tools and resources.

About Amgen

The Amgen Foundation seeks to advance science education, improve patient access to quality care, and strengthen the communities where Amgen staff members live and work. Since 1991, the Foundation has made more than $160 million in grants to nonprofit organizations throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, and Europe that impact society in inspiring and innovative ways, and those that provide disaster relief efforts both domestically and internationally.

About Science Buddies

Science Buddies, a 501c3 public charity, is the leading award-winning non-profit science fair "how-to" resource for K-12 students, teachers, and parents. With scientist-authored educational content covering 30 fields of science and engineering and a website created and run by scientists and engineers, Science Buddies supports serious scientific inquiry by providing tools for project selection, as well as step-by-step instruction and support from scientists and experts on setting up, managing, and monitoring a project and recording the results. Science Buddies helps students learn more, get support, save time and get inspired.

Media Contact:
Jayme Burke, Science Buddies
+1-925-736-2696
jayme@sciencebuddies.org