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Media Advisory

For immediate use

Aug. 31, 2007

Media invited to see Destiny traveling lab in action in Lumberton, Whiteville

Media representatives are invited to experience hands-on science aboard Destiny, one of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s two traveling science laboratories, when it visits Robeson Early College High School and Southeastern Community College next week.

Wednesday (Sept. 5)
10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Robeson Early College High School
5160 Fayetteville Road, Lumberton

Students from two of Monica Graham’s environmental science honors 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.

Thursday (Sept. 6)
9:45 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.
11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Southeastern Community College
4564 Chadbourn Highway, Whiteville

Students from one of Rebecca Westbrooks’ environmental biology classes and one of her general biology 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 learn how to use a spectrophotometer, measure absorbencies, collect quantitative data and produce a standard curve to find the protein content in each sample.

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 14 offered as part of Destiny’s curriculum. 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.

Destiny Web site: http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/go/destiny

Destiny contact: Claire Ruocchio, (919) 843-5915 or clr@unc.edu
News Services contact: Susan Houston, (919) 962-8415 or susan_houston@unc.edu