From fire tornadoes to foam gnomes, youth experience mind-blowing science

Mar 25, 2024Courtney Morris
Mind Trekkers experiment

Local youth experienced mind-blowing science during San Jacinto College’s Mind Trekkers STEM Festival March 7-8.

Held at the Central Campus’ LyondellBasell Center for Petrochemical, Energy, & Technology, the annual STEM outreach event during the daytime drew approximately 5,300 sixth graders from Pasadena, Deer Park, La Porte, Channelview, Galena Park, Sheldon, and Clear Creek ISDs — as well as First Baptist Christian Academy and The Rhodes School for the Performing Arts. Hundreds of community families attended the free family night on March 7.

Mind Trekkers experiment
Science left college labs, transforming into 100 hands-on demos and activities run by San Jac faculty, staff, and students and community volunteers. From liquid nitrogen ice cream and a fire tornado to burning money and a moment of inertia spinner, experiments engaged the mind — and all five senses.

“Since 2015, this has been one of San Jac’s largest STEM outreach initiatives specifically for sixth graders in our local area and those in greater Houston,” said Dr. Allatia Harris, vice chancellor of strategic initiatives. “Our Mind Trekkers Family Night is also a great chance for community members to bring their families out to this unique STEM experience.”

This year’s Mind Trekkers sponsors included LyondellBasell, PEMEX Deer Park, The Kaneka Foundation, Chevron Refinery Pasadena, Chevron Philips Chemical Company, Arkema, East Harris County Manufacturers Association, Solugen, INEOS, and Dow.

View the Mind Trekkers photo album.

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