Tech hosts annual Region II science and engineering fair

February 5, 2018


Staff Reporter|hej006@latech.edu


Louisiana Tech hosted the annual Region II Science and Engineering Fair January 25 and 26. The science fair was a way for many grade school students to gain experience in various scientific fields of study at early ages. This exposure to Tech’s campus also inspires the image of their future selves attending college after graduating, even influencing their choice towards Tech.


Diane Madden, associate director of SciTEC, directed the Region II Science and Engineering Fair. It included elementary and junior high students from across the region.


“The science fair includes students from many districts in the region,” Madden said. “The elementary division students compete the first day and the junior and senior divisions are on the second day. The judges are volunteer professors, teachers and even university students.”


These students picked scientific topics within different categories of scientific study for themselves to hypothesize, test and observe the results.


“They choose something that interests them and test it, observing the results and creating a presentation for the science fair,” Madden said. “The experience they gain from enacting real-life application to the scientific method is just one of the many benefits of this science fair for the students.”


The students gain experience in presenting a topic that they researched, such as Gracelyn Chevallier, a seventh grade student from Winnfield Middle School.


“I’ve done the science fair since we were eligible in fifth grade,” Chevallier said. “I like the experience of researching something and finding answers and what it’s turned out to be like talking in front of people.”


Of course, the exposure of the students to Tech inspires them to higher education. Often these students’ experience at Tech with the university students and professors will also prompt the students to look at Tech when contemplating their future. One of the judges, Cathi Cox-Boniol, observes this impact on the students.


“Some of them have never been on a college campus,” Cox-Boniol said. “For them to come to the university and be able to take tours and go eat in the student center — it can be a game changer.”


The science fair provided the students with scientific experience and Tech’s campus with positive exposure that may just spur these young prospective university students toward our College of Engineering or College of Applied and Natural Sciences in the near future.


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