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BioCommunique Article

Come out and inspire future life science leaders at the largest science festival on the west coast!

STEM Week Just Around The Corner – EXPO Day Kicks Off Saturday, March 2nd!

  • 2019-02-14T00:02:00.000+0000
  • San Diego
  • Author: Sara Pagano

The Biocom Institute expects over 65,000 San Diegans to take part in an action packed week of STEAM activities including rockets, explosions, reptiles and more as it kicks off the San Diego Festival of Science & Engineering.

Opening the week with its renowned EXPO Day, more than 20,000 local families, children and students will fill Petco Park on Saturday, March 2, 2019 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. to enjoy a full day of free STEAM fun provided by hundreds of San Diego area businesses, schools, libraries, and museums at the 11th annual San Diego Festival of Science & Engineering’s EXPO DAY. Presented by Illumina Foundation, EXPO DAY will bring dozens of new and returning hands-on learning, interactive activities and experiments to inspire local Pre-K-12 students and families to engage in all things science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM). The event is FREE and open to the public.

For the first-time-ever, festival organizers will include various arts-related activities and several arts organizations at EXPO DAY, including Delawie, Art Science Complex, San Diego Mesa College’s Fashion Department and Writerz Blok San Diego.

According to Affordable Colleges Online, adding the A to STEM encourages experimentation, collaboration and innovation through core standards, inspiring students to think outside of the box to solve real-world problems. In California, STEAM clusters are among the fastest growing in the world, and it’s vital that students engage in STEAM fields, to align with some of the growing fields such as genomics, environmental engineers, bioinformatics and data analytics to meet workforce demands.

“The festival aims to engage and encourage kids and adults of all ages and backgrounds, including Pre-K-12 students to become our well-rounded innovators and leaders of tomorrow,” says Sara Pagano, managing director, San Diego Festival of Science & Engineering. “Every person learns in their own unique way, and it’s crucial that we use all educational approaches, including the arts to guide students in building strong problem-solving skills and cultivating their creativity.”

Anticipated EXPO DAY Features/Highlights for 2019:

  • *NEW* Writerz Blok San Diego Live Art: The team at Writerz Blok will host a live graffiti art show at EXPO DAY. The artists will paint several surfboards with STEM concepts, such as DNA strands, star clusters and iconic engineering tools.
  • *NEW* Millipore Sigma’s Returns With A New Cube – The Curiosity Cube, a retrofitted shipping container turned mobile science lab, travels North America bringing hands-on science to visitors. Equipped with the latest technology, the Curiosity Cube's goal is to spark curiosity within the future generation of scientists.
  • *NEW* The Flu Bug – Visit Quidel’s booth to get a first look at how quickly the flu can spread and watch it light up the guests throughout the park as the epidemic grows with contact.
  • *NEW* Fashion Meets Science – Meet the fashion design students of San Diego Mesa College, who have taken inspiration from science images provided by Salk Institute and turned them into fabric patterns for their next runway hit.
  • *Back By Demand* U.S. Air Force Rapid Strike Simulator: The Air Force will attend EXPO Day with an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Team in additional to a 12' activation trailer with interactive games.
  • Be On The Lookout for DUMBO! Walt Disney’s favorite elephant will be out an about at EXPO Day. Here’s your chance to get up close and personal before America’s beloved friend takes flight.
  • Pre-K Zone: Inspire even the tiniest innovators to ignite their love for science! Collaborators in this special space include: Children’s Discovery Museum, the San Diego Library, Science Delivered and North American Fitness and Health. The Pre-K Zone will give children under 5 an opportunity to participate in STEAM-related activities. Visit the Pre-K Zone to excite your tiny future innovators. Let their imaginations run free, they just might change the world.
  • TEDxKids@ElCajon Take the Stage: TEDxKids@El Cajon will join us for a second year for TEDx kids talks starting at 11 a.m. on the Dugout Stage. Hear inventive ideas from some of tomorrow’s future movers and shakers. You’ll laugh, smile and be proud of the skills these students are learning in public speaking, and leadership. Organized by the Cajon Valley Union School District, these TEDx Talks offer a unique platform for students to share their ideas. Connect with our future leaders and leave inspired. Arrive at 11:15 to see the Elementary Chorus sing the National Anthem from the dugout stage before handing it over to TEDxKids@ElCajon.
  • League of Extraordinary Scientists (LXS): Join some of the brightest minds in San Diego County at the Mercado area in PETCO Park. Have questions about Etymology, Nano Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Genomics, Oceanography, Science or Astronomy? Listen and engage with scientists from San Diego companies and organizations who are active in their industries at an engaging Fireside Chat. Be sure to also stay for the LXS Science Tour, which offers hands on activities for scientists of all ages.
  • Extra Credit Adventure: Teachers, encourage your students to explore STEAM by rewarding extra credit for attending EXPO Say! Download the EXPO Day Extra Credit worksheet in advance or stop by any information booth inside the park to pick up a copy.
  • EXPO DAY Stage Performances: Everyone’s favorite math rappers – The Music Notes – return to EXPO Day this year. Through rhythm and rhyme they break down math concepts from simple addition to advanced algebra. Fleet Science Center, Mad Science, Mollie Molecule and others captivate audiences with explosive STEM fun. The experts at Ecovivarium give guests an up close and personal experience to reptiles who call Southern California home. Additional acts will be added as EXPO Day approaches.

Festival Fun Continues Through March 10, 2019. After EXPO DAY at PETCO Park, the fun continues with over 90 events during Festival Week (March 3-10) – eight days of learning, interaction and behind-the-scenes opportunities for students in grades K-12, adults and families to ignite their passion for STEM and STEAM education. Also making its return is the popular 21 and up series. In collaboration with the Fleet Science Center, the 21 and up series spotlights adult science enthusiasts and encourages them to continue and share their passion for STEM and STEAM with others, proving learning lives on at any age. Festival events are FREE and open to the public unless otherwise stated.

Sponsors for the 2019 San Diego Festival of Science & Engineering include:

Illumina Foundation

Gold: ABC 10, The City of San Diego, Diversity Comm/STEAM Magazine, MeTV, Qualcomm

Silver: Cox Communications, Fleet Science Center, Hologic, San Diego County Board of Supervisors, San Diego County Office of Education, San Diego Padres, Univision Radio San Diego: Qué Buena 106.5, Amor 102.9, U.S. Air Force, Viasat

Copper: ASML, Cubic, Ferring Pharmaceuticals, Heron Therapeutics, LiveWell San Diego, LPA Inc., Millipore Sigma, NBC 7 San Diego / Telemundo 20, Northrop Grumman, Quidel, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Vertex Pharmaceuticals

Krypton: Celgene, Lilly, Intercept, Mitchell, Pfizer, Inc., Prometheus Laboratories Inc., San Diego County Credit Union, Scatena Daniels Communications, Solar Turbines

Titanium: Academy of Our Lady of Peace, Anthem BlueCross, Collins Aerospace, Compass Charter Schools, Conatus Pharmaceuticals, Corning, Delawie, DRS Daylight Solutions, Frontier Waters Systems, General Dynamics NASSCO, intrexon, Leidos, The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Microsoft, NanoImaging Services, NDIA San Diego, P2S Inc., pSemi, Point Loma Nazarene University, TaylorMade, U.S. Army.

Visit for full festival schedule updates and to register for individual events.