After a brief review of DNA history, we’ll delve into the fascinating case of the Golden State Killer. We’ll explore potential uses of genetic genealogy in society today, from finding long lost relatives to solving cold cases. Many experts in the field believe that every law enforcement agency could benefit from having a genetic genealogist on the team. After the talk, we’ll see if you agree! Tobi Kirschmann is a veteran DNA analyst who spent a decade working for the California DNA Databank before moving to Saratoga Springs, NY, in 2017.
Antarctica to the Adirondacks:
The Ice Lady’s Amazing Journey
June 15 7pm
Hear how Michele Cross turned her love of science into a lifelong adventure. After a seven-week research expedition to Antarctica, this special education teacher was selected to work with NASA scientists studying ice and snow in the Adirondacks. At Corning-Painted Post High School she developed a science course for struggling readers and writers and continues sharing her knowledge with fishermen and science enthusiasts around the Keuka Lake area of upstate New York.
Michele Cross teaches a collaborative, hands-on class called “Life, Literature, and Science at the Poles.” A passionate educator for 34 years, you can otherwise find her hiking, cycling, kayaking, snowshoeing, and simply enjoying the outdoors. Throughout winter, “The Ice Lady” collects frozen samples and teaches the local community what her findings reveal. With retirement approaching, she hopes to add actual ice fishing to her list of outdoor activities.
WSKG welcomes Julia Diana, a Binghamton University student, into the Science department for Spring 2021. She will be learning science communication and the role of public media in our community. Below is an excerpt from Ms. Diana. I am currently entering my second semester of my junior year at Binghamton University, hoping to earn my degree in Biological Sciences by spring of 2022. At Binghamton I am involved in the Scholars Program, the Student Ambassador Program, and research. I began my time at Binghamton working as a member of the Freshman Research Immersion Program which brought me deeper into the sciences and was especially valuable as a means of benefitting my skills in communication, organization, and analysis. Aside from research, I really enjoy nature photography and this ties in nicely with my love of science.
I have been interested in science for as long as I can remember. I was able to move forward with this interest through research at the collegiate level. Since my first year of college, I have been working in research labs focused on microbial biofilms. Biofilms are colonies of bacteria encased in a slimy matrix that adheres to a surface. They are relevant in human health because they are extremely resistant to treatment, making biofilm infections dangerous to high-risk hosts. My research has led me to understand much about interactions between micro- and macrobiology. Much of my work has been concerning developmental patterns and impacts of the biofilm-forming bacterial strain Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1 and PA14. My most recent work has involved the growth of multiple biofilm-forming bacterial strains in a single environment, and I look forward to continuing the research process on this project. This project seeks to gain a deeper understanding of interactions between different bacterial species capable of forming biofilms, and it is something I will be continuing to work on in the upcoming semester. Recently, I had the opportunity to be in a course with a wonderful professor who really sparked my interest in ecology. This newfound interest is something that I intend to pursue with the time remaining in my undergraduate career. In particular, I am curious about the impact of bird species on the environment in New York. This is a topic I am hoping to investigate throughout my internship at WSKG.
During my time as an intern at WSKG, I have a few goals I would love to achieve. One such goal is to bolster female interest and confidence in STEM fields. Being a woman in STEM myself, I feel that I understand the importance of representation for women and the impact it has on young minds. I would like to use my time at WSKG to inspire young women to feel that they are able to explore their interests. Another goal of mine is to make science more accessible to the general public with interactive social media posts and supplemental information that works to help anyone with interest get outside and start observing the world. Additionally, I intend to use my time at WSKG to create content that fosters positivity during the current pandemic.
Storytelling for Change Series Part 1:
Behind the Scenes with the Makers of Age of Nature
Friday, December 4, 2020, 12:00 PM – 12:45 PM EST
Storytelling for Change is a series of virtual discussions about how art, story and science can help us imagine—and create—a better world. In this first webinar, we’ll take a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Age of Nature, a new PBS series produced with scientific insights from The Nature Conservancy. Learn more & register today! As we navigate big questions about how to live and thrive on Earth today and into the future, nature can be a source of inspiration. The same sense of wonder and creativity nature invokes in us can also spark action to effect change. Today, storytellers including filmmakers, artists, poets and creators of all kinds are stepping up to tell nature’s story – which is also ours, the human story.
Looking for ways to examine media literacy concepts with your students? Mrs. Murat, high school teacher, PBS Digital Innovator All-Star, 2020 New York State Teacher of the Year, and media literacy expert has shared these activity-based mini-lessons! These are adapted from content found on PBS LearningMedia and Common Sense Media. Editable
Additional media literacy resources:
Media Making & Media Literacy for all Educators (PBS LearningMedia)
NAMLE (National Association for Media Literacy Education)
News and Media Literacy Collection (PBS LearningMedia)