ACCESS Program

Prof. Shumaker-Parry developed and has taught a week-long session focused on interdisciplinary topics related to nanomaterials and spectroscopy in the ACCESS Program at the University of Utah. ACCESS is sponsored by the College of Science to integrate women into science, math and engineering careers. In-coming freshman scholarship recipients participate in a 6-week science and mathematics summer program prior to their first semester at the University of Utah.

 MESA: Mathematics, Engineering and Science Achievement

Our group has been partnered with faculty at the Salt Lake Center for Science Education (SLCSE), a grade 6-12 lab school. We have shared our interests in nanomaterials and spectroscopy through hands-on science with junior high and high school MESA Club students. Activities include building box spectroscopes, synthesizing metal nanoparticles and hosting students on the University of Utah campus to characterize the particles with electron microscopy. We are supporting the high school and junior high MESA Club students in introducing the spectroscopes and a hands-on science lesson about light/matter interactions with local elementary students. This project is in conjunction with education and outreach activities within the NSF CCI CaSTL.

Hands-on Materials and Spectroscopy Activities with the Local Community

Our group shares our enthusiasm for science and engineering with kids and adults in the local community through many different activities.  Activities include introducing 2nd grade students to polymers and making bouncy balls; serving as science fair judges at school, district and state science fairs; synthesizing gold nanoparticles with mothers and grandmothers with their children and grandchildren.  Some examples are shown in the photos.