UW-Madison Science Alliance Updater – April 26, 2021

UW-Madison Science Alliance Updater
26 April 2021  
Hi Everyone,
The end of April brings the penultimate week of classes as the academic year draws to a close.  This week usually is among the busiest times for K12 field trips to campus, and it normally signals the ramping up of preparations for summer programs with youth.
But as it was not usual last year, so it is not yet normal this year.  While the public will be largely welcomed back to outdoor venues and to many indoor venues on campus starting May 10, young people will not be welcomed for in-person youth programming on campus, except for daylong Badger Sports Camps.
As we approach the period that UW’s Malia Jones and her colleagues at “Dear Pandemic” have dubbed “Pandexit,” those of us in the University’s outreach mission in general, and in the mission of engaging young people in specific, will have time for a remembering of the past and a reckoning for the future.  As the UW is a learning institution—that is, one that says its policies & programs are based largely on data—it will be helpful to our future counterparts for us to weigh both our successes and shortcomings during this year of living covidly.  Or as my kids would say, you need to spend as much time watching film of the fumbles as you do of the touchdowns.  
We will have an opportunity to recall and reflect on many successes, but we will also need to register statements from spring 2020 such as “youth programming is not a core campus enterprise” and policies from this year that the university found itself unable to welcome young people on campus for academic programs.  
When physician and historian Steve Oreck spoke to Wednesday Nite @ The Lab in November 2018 on the topic of how the University responded to the flu pandemic of 1918-19, one of his key points was that the university forgot to remember the flu and its victims, and forgot to remember the policies imposed, for good or ill.  We can choose to remember this time.
Thanks again!
Tom Zinnen
Note: please visit https://science.wisc.edu/science-alliance/ for the Updater archive.
Notable This Week
1.  Science Alliance meets weekly by Webex at 10:00 am Mondays, including April 26. Email Liz Jesse at ejesse2@wisc.edu or Tom Zinnen at zinnen@biotech.wisc.edu to receive the link. The meeting notes are archived on https://science.wisc.edu/science-alliance/.   
The draft agenda for Monday, April 26 at 10am includes:
  • Welcome
  • Updates
    • Outlook for public programs for adults and for children in Spring 2021 and in Summer 2021
    • Review of current public programs open to the public on campus
  • Science Expeditions Campus-wide Open House:  Affirming dates for 2022
  • Other announcements or topics
    • Family Gardening Day Online  
2.  Now in Archive:   Please invite your colleagues in research & outreach to check out the YouTube archives of presentations from
2021 UW Science Expeditions Open House on April 9, 10 and 11.   
3.  Programming Events coming this week and soon:
  • The UW Now Livestream.  April 27 at 7 pm: “U.S.–China Relations” with James Stavridis, retired four-star admiral, chair emeritus of the board of the U.S. Naval Institute; and Jessica Weeks, professor of political science and H. Douglas Weaver Chair in Diplomacy and International Relations


4.  Upcoming Lineup for Wednesday Nite @ The Lab online by zoom starting at 7pm Central. Register at go.wisc.edu/240r59    Schedule and descriptions at https://science.wisc.edu/wednesday-nite-at-the-lab

April 28  “An Invitation to Mathematical Physics & Its History” Jont Allen, Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
May 5  “How to Make Computers Everyone Can Use, Including Seniors Who Can’t/Won’t”  Gregg Vanderheide, Trace R&D Ctr, University of Maryland

May 12  “The Origins & Works of the ‘Dear Pandemic’ Project”  Malia Jones, Applied Population Lab

May 19  “How to Reduce the Risk of Wildfire Ignition from Power Grids”  Line Roald, Electrical & Computer Engineering

5.   Josh Knackert is helping spread the word about a new survey underway of science communicators and outreachers by Parmvir Bahia (https://www.linkedin.com/in/parmvir-k-bahia/). Here’s the survey link:  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/JFDKL7R

Why are we doing this?

• The STEM Engagement field and profession (specialists including but definitely not limited to: full-time, part-time or any-time science communicator; officer for outreach organization; events producer; STEM festival coordinator; science education toolbox creator; science librarian; or anyone else who helps connect non-experts with scientific topics and expertise) is continuing to evolve. We want to do our part to help the world better understand this work.
• This survey is being conducted by the members of the LiveSci Collective, a growing community of practice for STEM engagement professionals. We want to better understand 1) who is out there, as best as possible, in the STEM engagement professional landscape; 2) your professional and personal goals, in the context of being a part of a community of practice; and to this end, 3) collect data that will be shared back (anonymously) to the STEM engagement professional community regarding current compensation rates for this work.

6.  Wonders of Physics Goes Online for 2021
After 37 years of physics presentations to the public, The University of Wisconsin – Madison is this year sponsoring a physics video competition for teachers and students.

We invite you to submit a 2-minute video demonstrating a physics concept. Awards will be given for the best videos, and winners will be posted on our website and edited into a longer video to be shown on public television.

We encourage submissions from students and teams, but for legal reasons, anyone under the age of 18 must work under the supervision of a parent, guardian, or teacher who will submit the video on their behalf. This could be a fun educational project for families or for physics classes during this period of social distancing.

The deadline for submissions is June 30, 2021. You can find more information at https://wonders.physics.wisc.edu/contest/.

7.  Tune in to the following University Place program premiering on the Wisconsin Channel in April:

 4/26 at 9:00 pm CDT            

Hybrid Future: Electric vs. Electrified Powertrains 
Andrea Strzelec, Program Director
Masters of Engineering in Engine Systems, UW-Madison
Professor Strzelec compares vehicles with internal combustion engines, battery electrics, and hybrid systems (with both an engine and electric motor) and shows that there is no such thing as a zero emissions vehicle.
This program may also be viewed on or before the broadcast date at