April 24th, 2024

Kiwanis Regional Science Fair inspiring youth for another year

By James Tubb on March 26, 2024.

Anna Smith

The Kiwanis Regional Science Fair is sending two youth to the national fair, after another year of success for young scientists in southeastern Alberta.

“We had 53 projects this year and 75 students,” said Patty Rooks, science outreach co-ordinator with Praxis Medicine Hat. “We’re just so excited that the numbers are building back up.”

The fair had vital support from schools in town, and businesses to donate the prizes, said Rooks, for which organizers were deeply grateful.

“The trivia went really well. And there were even a few trivia prizes leftover for next year, because we finished judging so quickly, just based on the support we had from so many businesses and industry donating their time to send judges for the thing,” said Rooks. “It’s just so exciting.”

Many people don’t realize the time and support that goes into making the fair happen each year, said Rooks, likely due to how much of that work goes into making the event go off without a hitch.

“But it all came together, and it’s amazing,” said Rooks. “What’s most important was, so many of the students came out and said, ‘I can’t wait for next year.’ And that’s what just tickled my heart the most. Because you don’t just get them once, you get them year after year after year. So that’s wonderful.”

This sentiment shows that the fair is doing as it intends, said Rooks, and inspires students to pursue science throughout their youth and potential careers. The location, as well, helps bridge the gap between grade school and post-secondary education, as they’re able to interact with scientific equipment at the Medicine Hat College.

This year was mildly bittersweet however, as a longtime member announced he would be moving on.

“Our MC, Dr. Ken Sauer, who you know, has done the emceeing for so very long, he sadly hung up his lab coat and said he won’t be volunteering anymore. Just because lots is going on. He says he’s 92, and it’s time for someone else to step up and take his spot,” said Rooks. While the team is sad to see him go, they are looking forward to seeing who will fill the role in the future.

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