RW2017 Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Tuesday February 7, 2017
11:00-12:20 pm, Room 115 Pharmacy Building
Trichome Hairs – Miniature Chemical Factories in Plants
Dr. David Danehower, AVOCA Farms
Dr. James Johnson, AVOCA Farms
Presiding: Dr. Tesfaye Serbessa, Dr. Mohammed Talukder
2:00-3:00 pm, Room 105 McLendon Hall (for Faculty)
Virtual Meeting Dr. Stacey Williams & Edward Lee, US Air Force Office of Scientific Research
Presiding: Dr. Harry Bass, Mike Rice
3:30-5:00 pm, Lobby of Pharmacy Building
The Amazing STEM Race
Presiding: Moses McDaniel Sheryl Bradford, Reta Blair
5 :00– 7:00 pm, Room 229 Dixon-Patterson Hall
Dr. Robert George, NSF South Big Data Spokes Seminar,
Presiding: Dr. Malcolm Dcosta, Dr. Linda Hayden
7:30 pm. Burnim Fine Arts Center
Benefit Concert for the Town of Princeville, NC $10

ECSU Students Sprint for Science

By Jon Hawley, Daily Advance, Staff Writer, Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Elizabeth City State University students sprinted for science on Tuesday, competing in “The Amazing STEM Race” as part of the university's annual STEM Research Week.

“I've been excited since I signed up,” Sherol Jackson said with her teammate Ebony Grant before dashing off to the Vaughan Center to start the STEM race by running half a mile on a treadmill.

Pairs of students zipped around the Vaughan Center, Williams Hall, the Jenkins Science Center, the Pharmacy Complex and other facilities, completing science activities and vying for a $200 first prize that would be split between team members.

The relay was a great way to show students how diverse ECSU's science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs are, said Sheryl Bradford, a natural science professor who organized the relay with her colleague, Reta Blair. Faculty members in numerous fields helped come up with events, she explained.

Bradford said she modeled the STEM race after one of her favorite shows, the competition/reality show “The Amazing Race.” In the show, teams compete while traveling the world.

After warming up at the Vaughan Center, students solved problems in a “math sprint” at the Williams Hall gym, then operated the aviation program's flight simulator in Dixon Hall. Then at the Jenkins Center, they used ECSU's scanning electron microscope to take images of fruit flies under 100,000-times magnification, Bradford said.

From there, students potentially hit a “roadblock,” as Bradford described it. That roadblock was called the Madagascar hissing cockroach.
Inside a biology lab, Professor Moses McDaniel required each student in the team to hold one of cockroaches, each several inches long, for a minute.

“What is this supposed to prove?” asked Narendra Banerjee before reluctantly scooping up one of the roaches. “Are you sure they don't bite?”

Once Banerjee was holding the roach, McDaniel assured him that the roaches are harmless, although they do actually hiss as a defense mechanism. McDaniel also explained professors use them as a teaching aid.

Banerjee and his teammate, Jeffrey Smith, said the most challenging event of the relay so far was safely landing a plane in the flight simulator.

From there, students faced an engineering puzzle back at the Pharmacy Complex before dashing to the finish line at a softball field, Bradford said.

The STEM race was one of numerous activities ECSU has planned throughout STEM Research Week. To see a full schedule, go to www.ecsu.edu.