Hugh Downs School Professor of Practice Pauline Davies took a team of ASU students from her research project at the Arizona Cancer Evolution Center (ACE) to the Chandler Innovation Fair in the spring of 2023.
The Chandler Fair, held every February, showcases the businesses, artists, students and innovators in the community and attracts thousands of visitors. It offers unique opportunities for attendees to explore the discoveries of science engineered in their own backyard and taught in Chandler Unified schools. Chandler uses 'sneaky science' by entertaining the whole family while explaining how science is important to daily life.
“It was a superb day,” says Davies. “There were wonderful, interactive activities for children of all ages. Our team was kept busy throughout. We had a site where children made biological cells out of slime and Play-Doh and another table where they squashed strawberries and did a science experiment to bring out the DNA. It was a great opportunity to talk to children and their parents about cancer in a very child-friendly way.”
The ACE team at the fair included students from the ACE Scholars Program and present and past ASU communication students of Davies. “The students were all terrific. They were brilliant at interacting with the children,” she said.
Bianca Dapon, a student in Davies’ Introduction to Human Communication class was there all day, mixing slime and explaining science to the children
“The fair was not only an opportunity for me to gain insight into communications and education, but to also volunteer and help other families who were excited to see the joy of learning shine through their children,” said Dapon. “That day was a gift in showing me that people truly do care for each other by coming together to share knowledge.”
The Arizona Cancer Evolution Center also awarded prizes to children in the elementary, junior and senior categories in the Hamilton Invitational Science and Engineering Fair in the Chandler Education district for excellent science projects.
“It was hard work judging the many dozens of entries, but encouraging young people on their scientific journey was so rewarding, and many of their ideas were brilliant; so uninhibited,” says Pauline Davies. “Who knows, one of those youngsters may turn out to be a Nobel Prize winner.”