Biology Professor, Students Present at AAAS Annual Meeting

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A group of Saint Joseph's University students, led by Scott McRobert Ph.D., professor of biology, attended the American Association for the Advancement of Science's (AAAS) globally renowned annual conference in Washington, D.C. McRobert presented "Bedtime Stories for Fido: Life in a Biodiversity Laboratory" at Family Science Days, a sub-conference of AAAS on Feb. 19.

McNulty Scholar Maura Southwell ’13, Remington Roberts ’12, Kristoffer Bauer ’11, and biology graduate student Timothy Paciorek ’10, discussed their experiences in McRobert’s SJU Biodiversity Laboratory and demonstrated their educational and experimental tool, Fish Cam, at a booth that was set up throughout the conference. Bauer also presented a poster on his research in the student poster competition..

"The AAAS is one of the best scientific conferences in the world because it brings together scientists from different fields and areas," says McRobert. "It is a great opportunity for the students to interact with these scientists and to also present their research."

Fish Cam, the brainchild of McRobert, is a 24-hour camera that captures the shoaling, or grouping, patterns of FISH in the Biodiversity Laboratory. The tank housing the fish is streamed live to a webpage, allowing both elementary school and high school teachers to utilize it for classroom experiments.

AAAS, founded 160 years ago, is a non-profit organization that advances the sciences. The Family Science Days program, a sub-division of the AAAS general conference, promotes an interest in science to the general public through hands-on scientific experiences. Along with McRobert and his students, Family Science Days will include exhibits from NASA, the Smithsonian, and other educational organizations.



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