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Media Advisory

For immediate use

March 26, 2007

Monroe and Charlotte students to get hands-on lesson
aboard UNC’s Destiny traveling science learning program

Media representatives are invited to climb aboard Destiny and Discovery, the traveling science laboratories from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Destiny science learning program, when they visit Piedmont High School, Independence High School and E.E. Waddell High School this week.

Wednesday (March 28)
10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
11:36 a.m. to 1:06 p.m.
Piedmont High School
3006 Sikes Mill Road, Monroe
Students from two of Beth Walker’s college prep biology I classes will perform a lab exercise called “Case of the Crown Jewels.” Students will assume the role of forensic scientists and perform DNA restriction analysis (popularly known as DNA fingerprinting) to analyze drops of “blood” and other kinds of evidence found at crime scenes as they determine which suspects are guilty or innocent.

Wednesday (March 28)
1:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
Piedmont High School
3006 Sikes Mill Road, Monroe
During the same visit, students from one of Tonya Adams’ college prep chemistry I classes will perform a lab exercise called “The Crucial Concentration.” Students will assume the role of laboratory investigators for a court case to determine the amount of protein found in three sports drinks. Using the general concept of the Lowry Assay and microanalysis skills, students will learn how to use a spectrophotometer, measure absorbencies, collect quantitative data, and produce a standard curve to find the protein content in each sample.

Wednesday (March 28)
7:15 a.m. to 8:45 a.m.
8:54 a.m. to 10:20 a.m.
Independence High School
1967 Patriot Drive, Charlotte
Students from two of Mindy Baker-Creech’s biology classes will also perform “Case of the Crown Jewels,” described above.

Thursday (March 29)
7:15 a.m. to 8:50 a.m.
12:45 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.
E.E. Waddell High School
7030 Nations Ford Road, Charlotte
Students from two of Tamica Stubbs’ biology classes will perform a lab exercise called “Mystery of the Crooked Cell.” Students will discover the molecular basis of sickle cell disease by using gel electrophoresis as a diagnostic tool to differentiate normal hemoglobin from hemoglobin found in individuals with sickle cell disease.

The Destiny traveling science learning program is Morehead Planetarium and Science Center’s formal science education initiative serving pre-college teachers and students across North Carolina. Destiny develops and delivers a standards-based, hands-on curriculum and teacher professional development with a team of educators and a fleet of vehicles that travel throughout the state.

Destiny and Discovery, two custom-built, 40-foot, 33,000-pound buses, bring the latest science and technology equipment to students who otherwise would not see a high-tech laboratory or what a career in science can offer. The modules described above are among 13 offered as part of Destiny’s curriculum. “Case of the Crown Jewels,” “The Crucial Concentration” and “Mystery of the Crooked Cell” are developed from Boston University School of Medicine CityLab modules. All of Destiny’s modules are aligned with the N.C. Standard Course of Study.

The science buses are powerful visual images that heighten public awareness of the importance of and funding necessary for quality science education. The Destiny program first hit the road in 2000.

For more information, go to http://www.destiny.unc.edu

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Destiny contact: Claire Bury, (919) 843-5915 or bury@unc.edu
News Services contact: Becky Oskin, (919) 962-8596 or becky_oskin@unc.edu