Dec. 13, 2011

Tri-Valley Science and Engineering Fair to expand

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has announced plans to expand the Tri-Valley Science and Engineering Fair (TVSEF) it has sponsored for the past 15 years.

The fair, affiliated with the Intel Corporation, has served students in Alameda County so successfully that it has become a model for fairs within neighboring communities.

Because of this success, the Intel Corporation has expressed a desire to expand its current affiliation with the Tri- Valley to include the entire county. As a result, over the past few months, Intel has worked with the Laboratory and the community to create an Alameda County Science and Engineering Fair (ACSEF), to be held March 20-22, 2012 at Chabot College in Hayward.

While other science fairs in the state have struggled to continue or have declined in participation, TVSEF numbers have steadily grown, making it a hallmark of science education excellence.

During the past 15 years, some 6,195 students have participated -- an impressive growth from its first year (1997) of 125 students.

Several of the science fair participants have gone on to careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields. At least one is now an employee at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, a DOE national lab.

The new ACSEF would be run by a Board of Directors from the community, chaired by retired San Ramon Valley Unified School District science teacher Patti Carothers. The ACSEF will allow participation for all middle and high-school age students within Alameda County -- to include the cities of Alameda, Albany, Ashland, Berkeley, Castro Valley, Dublin, Emeryville, Fremont, Hayward, Livermore, Newark, Oakland, Piedmont, Pleasanton, San Leandro, San Lorenzo, Sunol and Union City.

The transition to the ACSEF will offer an expanded, larger countywide event, including growth opportunities for the Tri-Valley students who already participate, and an open door for new students who have not yet had access to an Intel-affiliated science fair.

With the Lab's help and that of the Intel Corporation and others, the Intel and California State Science Fair-affiliated ACSEF will provide a level of scientific outreach that has long been missing from Alameda County.

ACSEF pledges to help students gain perspective of the world through science, critical thinking, leadership and creative problem solving. Educators are encouraged to get their students involved in the ultimate S.T.E.M (Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) experience.

For further information and details about how to get involved as a student participant, fair volunteer, judge, or to make a donation, visit the ACSEF Website or contact the fair Director Patti Carothers at 925-426-7879 or by alamedacountySEF [at] ( email ) .