Considered to be one of the most significant advancements in science, the periodic table celebrated its 150 birthday in 2019. For economically disadvantaged students in Pittsburgh, Pa., the 2019 International Year of the Periodic Table was marked at the Carnegie Science Center through the American Chemical Society’s 2019 National Chemistry Week (NCW) ChemFest celebration.
The PPG Foundation and PPG Education Council supported the “Marvelous Metals” themed event through grants which directly funded the participation of hundreds of students.
“We are grateful for PPG and other local supporters who provide financial assistance for this event. Being able to offer scholarships to school districts who could not otherwise afford to bring their students to the Science Center for NCW is one of the most critical components of our program,” said Evonne A. Baldauff, Ph.D., National Chemistry Week coordinator. “ChemFest is a high energy event that really impacts these students, putting science into their reach.”
During NCW, students in grades three to 12 visited the Carnegie Science Center to experience first-hand the important role that chemistry and science plays in our daily lives. The week proved just how fun science can be by unleashing the students’ inner scientists to conduct flame tests and hydrophobic sand experiments, creating personal etch-a-sketches and exploring elements with an interactive periodic table.
Participating students also had access to the Mobile Energy Education Training Unit (MEET-U), an 18-wheeler tractor trailer with a walk-through gallery and informational materials regarding energy sources, renewable processes and consumption.
As part of NCW, local high-school students also attended a fast-paced networking event designed to learn about science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers. Along with other local chemical professionals with careers in STEM areas, 15 PPG employees participated in the informal event.
In sharing the American Chemical Society’s goal to enhance science literacy and participation in technology for local students, the PPG Foundation has supported NCW for over two decades.