Los Alamos National Laboratory

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September 2012

Free Film Screening at Bradbury Science Museum September 7

There will be a special screening of the film “The Biggest Story Problem: Why America’s Students are Failing at Math” at the Lab’s Bradbury Science Museum on Friday, September 7, at 5:30 p.m. The film, which was produced in New Mexico, investigates the middle-school math crisis in the United States and offers possible solutions to advancing our children’s math education.

No reservation is required, but seating is limited

For more information on the film, go to https://www.thebiggeststoryproblem.com/.

Los Alamos National Security, LLC’s Venture Acceleration Fund helped the Taos-based Imagine Education company with its business-development plan that, in turn, led to the Gates Foundation grant to produce this film.

LANL Participates in the“Next Big Idea” Activities on September 15

Fall is around the corner, and so is Los Alamos’ annual “Next Big Idea” event on Saturday, September 15. To help promote the unique and creative science community that is Los Alamos, the Lab’s Bradbury Science Museum is holding activities to dazzle and delight, and other LANL exhibits will be on display on the lawn in front of Fuller Lodge.

Bradbury Science Museum
1-2:30 p.m.: What do art and science have in common in creating visual representations? Artist Bill Gilbert, currently showing his “physiocartography” works at the Mesa Public Library Art Gallery, will discuss his work and use of technology, along with Laura Monroe and Bob Greene of the Lab’s Visualization Team, and Ralph Chapman, a visualization specialist.

3-4:30 p.m.: Art and science in collaboration is the topic of this panel discussion with representatives of Los Alamos and Sandia national laboratories, the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos, Santa Fe Institute, and the Scientists/Artists Research Collaborations residency artists.

In addition, there will be a demonstration by guest scientist Stan Cohen of his “tool for making computers that can sense and control more of the physical world than a desktop computer,” which is intended for artists, designers, hobbyists and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.

Fuller Lodge Lawn Displays
Zappin' Rocks on Mars with the Rover
Stop by and talk to Roger Wiens, the principal investigator for ChemCam, who is helping discover just what Mars is made of through a high-powered laser that takes samples from the planet's surface. Also scheduled is a full-scale inflatable model of the Mars rover!

Become More Attracted to Magnets
Representatives from the Lab's National High Magnetic Field Laboratory's Pulsed Field Facility will have activities to learn more about how magnets interact with other materials, including information about superconductivity.

Proctor & Gamble Specialty Corvette
Lab research partner, Proctor & Gamble, will have a previously wrecked 1986 Corvette that some of the company's engineers modified to participate in the Grassroots Motorsports Challenge. Its claim to fame is a vacuum that allows it to hold tight corners at high speeds.

Muon Detector
The Lab is using a muon detector to help locate concealed nuclear and explosive materials without radiation. Here's your opportunity to see how this technology works in action.

For more information on the Next Big Idea, go to http://www.nextbigideala.com/home.htm.

Los Alamos National Security, LLC and LANL are helping sponsor this event.

Northern New Mexico College Scholarship Dinner September 29

On Saturday, September 29, Northern New Mexico College will hold its 17th Annual Scholarship Awards & Donor Recognition Dinner. The event is scheduled for the Ohkay Casino Convention Center. In addition to recognizing the College’s scholarship recipients and donors, the evening will include a silent auction and the finest in student-performed entertainment. Seats are $100 each or $1,000 for a 10-person table. For more information, go to http://nnmc.edu/event/reserve-your-tickets-now-2012-foundation-scholarship-dinner.

To view the complete list of 2012 scholarship winners, go to http://nnmc.edu/sites/default/files/u302/ScholarshipRecipients2012.pdf

Lowe’s “Toolbox for Education” Grant Applications Due By October 12

Over the past five years, Lowe’s “Toolbox for Education “ program has provided almost $25 million to more than 5,000 schools across the country. Five million dollars is available for the 2012-13 school year; grant requests must be between $2,000 and $5,000 and will be accepted until October 12, or until 1,500 requests have been received. The grants must be used within the year they are received.

According to the company’s webpages, “There is a preference for funding requests that have a permanent impact such as facility enhancement (both indoor and outdoor) as well as landscaping/clean up type projects. Projects that encourage parent involvement and build stronger community spirit will be favored. Please note the grant money cannot be used to pay for memorials, stipends, salaries, artists in residence, field trips, scholarships, or third party funding. Only 10% of any award granted can be used toward outside resources such as labor, installation, consultation, and delivery.”

To learn more about the grants go to http://www.toolboxforeducation.com/index.html.

Predicting the Future Could Win a $1,000 California or Illinois Scholarship

Current or prospective California of Illinois college or university students could win an ATT scholarship of $1,000. To qualify, students need to post the answer to this question on their blog or website (Facebook and other social media don’t count): “Where do you see the Internet in 10 years?”

The article needs to be 300 to 500 words in length, and the student must submit the URL of the piece, along with a name and email address, by Friday, November 30. To review the rules and apply, go to http://www.attsavings.com/scholarship/ca for the California scholarship opportunity, or http://www.attsavings.com/scholarship/il to take advantage of the opportunity for an Illinois scholarship.

Espanola Public School Teachers Strengthen Skills During Summer Session

In the July heat, 21 elementary- through high-school teachers attended a five-day, 30-hour workshop designed to help them better understand and teach earth and space science. Developed and administered by the Lab’s Northern New Mexico Math and Science Academy, this year’s workshop,was titled “Earth Science in a New Mexico Context.” The sessions included hands-on and computer-based interactive programs that covered everything from phases of the moon, to the evolution of the Earth’s crust, to the planet’s water cycle. By the end of the sessions, the teachers’ own test scores for the subject matter showed improvement.

Ultimately, the sessions were designed to give the teachers tools that are readily transportable into their classrooms. With this knowledge, they will be able to help their students break free of misconceptions such as the idea that seasons are caused by the relative distance of the Earth from the Sun, when in actuality, it is the tilt of the Earth’s axis that causes our ever-changing seasons.

The teachers’ attendance was supported by the Espanola School District as part of its teacher professional development activities.

To learn more about the Lab’s Math and Science Academy, go to http://www.lanl.gov/education/teachers/mathsci.shtml.

New Director of Community Education at UNM-LA

Eva Artschwager has joined the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos as its director of Community Education. The position will allow Artschwager to put additional emphasis on enriching the branch’s Community Education offerings. Her initial goals include meeting the community’s lifelong-learning needs, providing classes that will benefit employees and employers within the area, and partnering with other service organizations (such as the YMCA and Los Alamos Cooperative Market) to identify and fill service gaps.

The Community Education department has already expanded its offerings with more than 20 new classes this fall. While some classes began on August 20, many more have later start dates. One of the new instructors, Robert Benedetti, the instructor for “Shakespeare in Production,” has won three Emmys and a Peabody award. A new class on Science Fiction begins on September 24, and there will be new “Enrichment Classes for Younger Students.”

To read more on these and other exciting learning opportunities, go to http://www.la.unm.edu/commed/CEFall2012final.pdf.

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