EWU Grad Students: on the March Toward Science Outreach

Amy Gray

March for Science 1

As Bloomsday runners were busy at packet pickup on May 4th, the March for Science was in full swing. Grad student Veronica Albrecht (Dr. Castillo lab) and Christina Ramelow (Dr. Daberkow lab) kindly gave up the better part of their Saturday to show off microbes and explain to excited children how one can build an EWU Eagle on a Petri plate with pigment-producing bacteria. Their table was busy with kids and adults curious about skin microbes, endosymbionts in termites, and hypercolor media. Our students also found themselves unexpectedly – but enthusiastically – explaining hemolysis (where a microbe plated on a Petri dish with media containing animal blood produces hemolysins that actually break open the blood cells, leaving a zone that looks clear around the bacteria)

March for Science 2

… and Kirby-Bauer disk diffusion antibiotic tests (where paper disks impregnated with different antibiotics are placed on a Petri dish covered with bacteria, and a clear zone of bacterial death right around the paper tells you whether the microbe is sensitive to the drug)

March for Science 3

first to EWU and Gonzaga faculty, and then on… live radio.

Three cheers for Veronica and Christina’s enthusiasm about science outreach! You did us proud.

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