Victoria University is strengthening its commitment to educating budding scientists in Regional Victoria with a travelling laboratory.
The VU Science Roadshow will visit schools in Regional Victoria in September and October where Year 9-10 students will boost their curiosity in science in the 'Be a Chemist for a Day' Program and Year 11-12 students can put theory into practice using analytical instruments in the VCE Chemistry Practicals Program.
The VU Gateway Vehicle is part of the travelling show, and it contains state-of-the-art scientific equipment including a liquid chromatograph for separating and analysing mixtures; and an ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometer to analyse samples with light absorption. The instruments were obtained through a partnership with Shimadzu Scientific Instruments.
VU's Dr Domenico Caridi said, "Instrumental chemical analysis is now an important topic within the VCE chemistry curriculum and access to analytical instrumentation is important for schools so as merge theoretical principles with hands-on experience. Unfortunately the cost of instruments means that these are not affordable by schools.
"In the VCE Chemistry Practicals Program students and their teachers will be able to put theory into practice with hands-on access to analytical instruments with experiments including the analysis of aspirin in medications and the analysis of caffeine in energy drinks.
"The 'Be a Chemist for a Day Program' engages students in science via their senses where aspirin is converted into Dencorub (Deep Heat) and students can smell the change. This program aims to inspire students at a younger age so that they may be encouraged to pursue studies and careers in science."
He is keen to promote hands-on science to secondary schools students. He said, "Science is an exciting career and will shape our future so it's critical to give school students opportunities to engage and have access to the right facilities to inspire them and extend their understanding."
Dr Caridi and staff from VU's School of Engineering and Science will be visiting schools in Ballarat, Beechworth, Benalla, Bendigo, Daylesford, Eaglehawk, Echuca, Gisborne, Kyabram, Mansfield, Rochester and Wangaratta.
Dates and times when the Show will be happened. The schedule for Bendigo, Rochester and Echuca is still being finalised.
Date School Time
17 September Beechworth SC 1.45-3.30pm
18 September Wangaratta Galen Catholic College 9-10.45am & 1.30-3.30pm
19 September Wangaratta High School 9-11am & 12.45-2.45pm
20 September Benalla SC 9-11am
20 September Benalla FCJ Catholic College 1:45-3.20pm
21 September Mansfield SC 9-11am
9 October Ballarat - Damascus College 11.15am-12.55pm & 1.38-3.18pm
10 October Daylesford SC 9-11am & 1.42-3.18pm
11 October Ballarat Secondary College 9-11am & 1.30-3.15pm
12 October Gisborne Secondary College 10:40-11:55am
15 October Rochester SC 1:50-3:30pm
16 October Kyabram P-12, (Fischer Campus) 11.15am-12:55pm & 1.45-3.25pm
Public Affairs Unit, Victoria University,
9919 4322; 0434 602 884; [email protected]