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Popular community science festival returns to Rockefeller

Paper rockets zoomed through the air, drones buzzed about collecting data on CO2 concentrations, model neuronal circuits were fashioned from thin copper strips. In short, for the first time since the beginning of the COVID pandemic, Science Saturday was back in full swing on the Rockefeller campus.

RockEDU’s annual science festival for kids from kindergarten to grade eight featured 28 hands-on stations led by more than 175 volunteers from Rockefeller and neighboring institutions, local high schools, and the NYC STEM Education Network. There were also talks on topics ranging from why neuroscientists study fruit flies to extracting new antibiotics from dirt. Nearly 1,000 people including families, teachers, and students from over 180 schools across the city’s 5 boroughs, the tri-state area, and as far away as Pennsylvania and Michigan were in attendance.

The event, which took place this September, was free and made possible thanks to the generous support of The Andreas C. Dracopoulos Family Science and Society Initiative, the Bessent-Freeman Family Foundation, the Quadrivium Foundation, and The Steinman Family Foundation. Under-resourced middle schools in New York City and local non-profit organizations with missions that provide educational opportunities for children were invited as part of the university’s continued community outreach efforts.

Event photos below were taken by Jonathan Heisler.