U.S. Department of Energy

07/21/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 07/22/2021 14:57

SRS Education Outreach Programs Adapted to COVID-19 Restrictions

Mitchell explained that the benefits found through efforts to work through the pandemic will continue to play an important role in the future of education outreach. Examples include the creation of a new program, STEMulating Conversations with Savannah River Site Experts, as well as video and virtual reality programs that bring SRS to classrooms throughout South Carolina and Georgia.

'Our Wet Wonders and Feathers in the Forest videos demonstrate the value of this concept,' said Mitchell. 'In the past, we brought a limited number of groups of students each year to SRS for a series of 'hands-on' environmental science experiments and lessons. Though I'm confident we will return to this popular method, we will also continue to reach deeply into classrooms throughout our region - and beyond - with the current and future videos, plus virtual reality programming.

'We recently completed and made available a science-based video on how a mass spectrometer functions. Students journey through this highly sensitive piece of equipment by riding on an electron beam to demonstrate the spectrometer's ability to identify the molecular makeup of a substance. It will soon be added to our new web-based library as a virtual reality program as well,' Mitchell added.

Demand for these videos is quickly growing. To date, more than 23,000 students have seen the videos, and educators have received corresponding guides.

'It's important to credit the value of this new approach to members of our video production, graphics, laboratory, research and development engineering, and information technology groups within SRNS,' said Mitchell. 'They stepped up and teamed up with us in our hour of need. None of this would have been possible without their assistance.'