Rio Grande, Ohio – The University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College and the Gallia-Vinton Educational Service Center (ESC) hosted the annual District 14 Science Day, known as Southern Ohio Science Day, on the university’s main campus. This year was Rio’s first opportunity to host the event for the Ohio Academy of Science, the leading organization in Ohio to foster curiosity, innovation, and support for the sciences. Chemistry Program Coordinator John Means said it was an honor to host the event.
“We were all so excited when the Ohio Academy of Science asked us last summer to host the Science Day,” Means said. “Everyone involved put in countless hours to make sure everything was ready for Saturday. Because this was our first time hosting the event, we wanted to make the transition to a new venue as easy as possible for our visitors and these young scientists. I am so grateful for everyone’s dedication to making Science Day a success, and we look forward to hosting again next year.”
139 students in 5th through 12th grades from across Gallia, Lawrence, Pike, Scioto and Adams counties presented a total of 119 projects at the event. Means said the faculty and students of the science departments were eager to meet with the students and serve the local communities by providing these young scientists a venue to show their skills and pathways to pursue science as a career.
“Our faculty and students enjoyed getting to meet with the students and talking about their projects. These young scientists brought wonderful projects and ideas to the event, and they all have the talent to go far in the science fields,” Means said. “Science day also gave us the chance to continue engaging with our community and supporting community functions. I feel this is the type of thing every university should be doing. It is part of our responsibility to provide a hub for the community and show support for local schools.”
Means said he is grateful for the support and sponsorship of Holzer Health System, Southern Ohio Medical Center and the Gallipolis Rotary as well as the campus community. The students were vying for over 16 awards, which had a combined value of more than $2,700, that were presented at the end of the event. Top winners for the day will move on to the Buckeye Science and Engineering Fair April 1, or the the State Science Day May 13.