Symposium Kicks Off Night Of Science And Art

science-symposiumMilton students’ research projects were on display at the annual Science Symposium on Friday evening in the lobby of the Pritzker Science Center. The symposium kicked off a Science & Art night on campus, where students shared their work in scientific research, visual arts, performing arts and music—with some participating in a range of events.

“This is the life of the Milton student,” said Julie Seplaki, chair of the science department. “They’re skillful and talented scientists, artists, musicians and actors. Science and arts always had events on the same night, but this is the first year we’ve brought the two together as a way to recognize our students’ varied talents.”

The symposium featured research projects by students in advanced science courses, with topics in environmental science, physics, chemistry and biology. Students presented their findings with posters throughout the lobby, and visitors could scan each poster’s QR code to see each student’s full report. The evening creates a “buzz” in Pritzker as the presenters take pride in their work and younger students receive inspiration, Julie said.

“We have lots of examples of really creative and novel approaches to some of the research questions the students have developed,” she said. “This is a chance for them to see their own evolution in science, and where we see evidence of their conceptual and skill development.”

Some of the topics explored during the Science Symposium were:

  • Effects of historic, small dams on brook trout habitat, Milton, MA
  • Macroinvertebrate-based water quality index for Pine Tree Brook, Milton, MA
  • Separation and confirmation of lead in aqueous solution
  • Using polarimetry to determine proportions of enantiomers in a mixture
  • Photon wavelength impact on ejection speed of electrons from a metal surface
  • Impact of angular velocity and angle of precession on the orbital period of a bicycle wheel
  • Potential for E. coli as hemoglobin generators
  • Temperature effect of lysosomal activity in tetrahymena
  • Cytoplasmic streaming in slime mold as dictated by food proximity

The Science Symposium was immediately followed by Arts Night, as Milton’s visual artists displayed their work in the Kellner Performing Arts Center and concerts by orchestra students and vocalists lit up King Theatre. An improv show in King rounded out the night.