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Girl Scouts Visit College of Engineering

University of California, Riverside Space, Science & Engineering Day

JPL and UCR Hosting Event Expecting More Than 1,000 Girl Scouts

(October 21, 2005)

Scouts peering into telescope during last year's UCR Regional Space, Science and Engineering Day

Scouts peering into telescope during last year's UCR Regional Space, Science and Engineering Day

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — — University of California, Riverside engineering students, staff and guest scientists from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory will host a series of activities, lectures and demonstrations for over 1,000 girl scouts and guests at the UCR Regional Space Science and Engineering Day from 1 to 5 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 30. Sunday, Oct. 23 is the deadline to register online.

A favorite activity has always been the Mars rover, in which the small, light-weight prototype space vehicle runs over several participants as they lay on the ground giggling and squirming, said UCR's Bourns College of Engineering Director of Special Programs, Linda O'Neill. Sheri Klug, Head of Mars Education for NASA, will give talks throughout the day on the Mission to Mars.

UCR students will participate with the girl scouts in 11 additional hands-on activities with names such as Rover Races, Make a Comet, Edible Rocks, Alka Seltzer Rockets, and Mars Imaging. Children will create their own star constellations in a 50-foot-square black plastic “planetarium.” Participating scouts come from the San Gorgonio Council, which includes much of Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

Volunteers from the Riverside Astronomical Society will give talks, offer hands-on activities, and set up telescopes for viewing solar flares and sunspots for the participants, ages 6 to 12.

The afternoon events will feature presentations by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory scientists, such as Maura Rountree-Brown, who will give a presentation titled “Comets and Deep Impact Update.” Rountree-Brown is the outreach leader for the Deep Impact mission.

The girls get to speak with scientists and engineering students and learn they too can receive quality science and engineering educations and embark on exciting careers.

“It was great fun participating in an event that helped inspire and educate young girl scouts, hopefully inspiring them to enter the world of science and engineering,” said Andrew Chin, president of the UCR chapter of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers

The event is made possible through funding provided by Xerox. Co-sponsors include NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the Riverside Astronomical Society, UCR's Society of Women Engineers, and the Bourns College of Engineering.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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