How we brought iGEM into the community

Camp BioE

We visited each of the four cohorts of middle- and high-school campers at Camp BioE on DNA Day to talk about synthetic biology. Our presentation included an introduction to transcription and translation, applications of synthetic biology, and a brief introduction to iGEM and our project. After our presentation, we sang "The PCR Song" and danced to the Bio-Rad "GTCA Song." Then, we helped the campers amplify DNA made of beads using the PCR process to see which table had the fastest enzymes! Take a look at the presentation slides Maddie and Aife put together here.

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TECBio and DiSCoBio

Claire, Maya, and Aife met with the students of TECBio and DiSCoBio, who are in high school and college. After reviewing transcription and translation, they talked about applications of synthetic biology, their project, and iGEM. Take a look at the presentation slides here. Following the presentation, they had a great discussion with the students about the project and about what comes after research--papers, patents, and more.

"Carnegie Science Center" by Allie Caulfield / CC BY 2.0
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Carnegie Science Center

Maya and Aife visited the Carnegie Science Center's H2Oh! exhibit to teach guests about lead and thallium contamination of water. They also covered synthetic biology and its applications in solving environmental problems. The kids were able to extract their own DNA from a saliva sample following this protocol provided by North Carolina DNA Day. Take a look at the poster Claire and Maya made for the event here.

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Pittsburgh Public Schools

Pittsburgh Public Schools tested the water from all schools' water fountains this summer as a proactive measure against exposing the students to lead. Any water fountains found to contain lead were removed. New filtered water dispensers were also added to each school. Aife created a video about the dangers of lead poisnoning for the teachers to show students, so that the students could better understand why their water fountains were tested over the summer. Take a look below, or visit the link here!

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