Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity

March 22, 2013

UW and Regional Organizations to Participate in Yakima Valley Science & Engineering Festival

Congressman Chaka Fattah Meets With GEAR UP StudentsThe Pacific Science Center, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center are just a few of the regional organizations slated to join several University of Washington programs at the second annual Yakima Valley Science and Engineering Festival, to be held at the Yakima Convention Center, March 26-27.

The event, sponsored UW GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs) and UW Genome Sciences Education Outreach, will feature hands-on science exhibits and engineering activities for students from grades K-12.

The festival is open to the public on Tue., March 26, from 2 – 8 p.m. Middle and high school students on pre-arranged field trips can participate in the festival on Tuesday (9 a.m. – 2 p.m.) and Wednesday (9 a.m. – 3 p.m.). Tuesday’s activities will also feature a VEX Robotics Competition. Workshops will be held throughout the festival as well.

Exhibits will be organized by career pathways which include agriculture, health science, information technology, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Exhibits will also include student and community resources from the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity’s (OMA&D) College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) and Recruitment and Outreach.

Other UW exhibitors and presenters include:

  • Center for Ecogenetics and Environmental Health
  • College of Engineering
  • Department of Anesthesiology
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering
  • Department of Human Centered Design and Engineering
  • Genome Sciences
  • Neurobiology & Behavior Outreach Program
  • School of Medicine: Center for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion & Native American Center for Excellence
  • School of Nursing: Online Neuroscience Education and Drug Addition (ONE-DA) & How Do I Learn?

Regional organizations participating include:

  • Center for Community Health Promotion/Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
  • ESD 105: STEM Showcase
  • Exo Labs Inc.
  • Heritage University’s Medical Laboratory Science Program
  • Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory (LIGO)
  • Museum of Flight: Aviation History
  • Oregon Museum of Science & Industry
  • Pacific Northwest University of Health Science
  • Pacific Science Center
  • Seattle BioMed: BioQuest
  • Seattle’s Hub for Industry-Driven Nanotechnology Education (SHINE)
  • Society for Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans in Science (SACNAS)
  • Washington NASA Space Grant Consortium
  • Washington State University Sweet Cherry Research
  • Washington State University Tree Fruit Research & Extension Center
  • Wild Horse Wind & Solar Facilities, Puget Sound Energy
  • Yakima Regional Medical and Cardiac Center
  • Yakima Valley Community College
  • Yakima Valley/Tri-Cities MESA: WSU

Many students that will participate in the event attend schools served by UW GEAR UP, a federally-funded grant program designed to increase the number of low-income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in post-secondary education.

Managed by OMA&D, UW GEAR UP serves middle and high school students in 13 rural districts in the Yakima, Skagit and Klickitat Valleys. The program provides activities, information, educational opportunities and support necessary for students to be successful in college.

More information is available on the festival web site. To schedule a student field trip, contact the UW GEAR UP Office at 509-865-8670 or