Press release NMTC Science Cafe 5th Anniversary Release,160121
It all began on a chilly night, December 19, 2010, at the Barnes & Noble bookstore in Bel Air, MD. Dr. Dennis Hiebert, engineer and mentor, shared his knowledge of robotics to a crowd of 40 community residents, youth robotics enthusiasts, and bookstore shoppers.
From that night, the NMTC has offered Science Cafes every month of the school year in Harford County, MD and since 2012, in Cecil County, MD. To date, close to 100 cafes have been held, bringing science in an understandable way to thousands of adults and high school students.
The value of the Science cafes, described by attendees and presenters, echo the compliments from many.
Attendee, Gary Martin, Program Executive officer for 1,600 member Army PEO Command Control Communications-Tactical at Aberdeen Proving Ground, shared; “The local community STEM programs offer a variety of opportunities within the Harford and Cecil counties. While most of the offerings are focused on exposing students to hands-on STEM experiences, the NMTC’s Science Cafes expands these offerings through intriguing discussions for students, parents, and anyone with an interest in gaining insights in a variety of emerging science topics. The fact that most of the café presenters are part of the local community, attendees also gain insights into the great STEM related research and work that goes on within the Harford/Cecil region.”
Presenter, David A. Vanko, Ph.D., Dean, Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science and Mathematics, Towson University, said:
“I was pleased and honored to be invited to present a Science Café talk about earthquakes and hydraulic fracturing. What impressed me the most was the enthusiasm and the wide age range of the attendees. Everyone, from retirees to a large number of local high school and college students, gave me a very warm welcome and asked a lot of interesting questions. Kudos to the Northeastern MD Tech Council for administering such a valuable program for the community!”
Dr. Nina Lamba, NMTC Board Member and NMTC Science Café founder drew inspiration for the Science Cafes from the grassroots movements around the world, including the Science Pubs in the UK. A Science Café is an informal event; a venue for scientists to talk about their work with the general public. “Our format has evolved – we invite our expert to present for about 30-35 minutes on a chosen topic, using language appropriate for a non-scientist adult. The audience is then invited to ask their questions. Since each Café we hold draws a wide variety of people, their questions lead to some great discussions.
Science Cafes are usually held towards the end of the month. Check nmtc.org. for further details on upcoming events.