USA Science and Engineering Festival
representative at the University of Wisconsin Madison's exhibit "How the Cranberry Was Crowned Jewel of the Bog" at the 2014 USA Science and Engineering Festival educates visitors about growing, harvesting, processing and storing cranberries, and how their acidic properties give them an abundance of functions. Although a bog is a foreboding place for many species--cold and acidic with little oxygen in the soil--cranberries thrive there. Researchers are using genomic science to study how we can preserve and improve this "jewel of the bog" for future generations. The exhibit was one of the National Science Foundation's (NSF) exhibits and stage shows at the festival that took place at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C., on April 25-27.
NSF was a partner in the festival, the nations largest celebration of science and engineering, where visitors eagerly engaged in hands-on activities and were amazed by the breadth of research and education projects supported by the agency. The festival expo provides an opportunity for NSF to showcase the innovation the agency supports throughout the U.S. and the projects and programs selected to represent NSF benefit from the opportunity to demonstrate the value of their activities and outcomes to a large national audience.
The goal of the festival is to reinvigorate the interest of the nations youth in science, technology, engineering and math by presenting these areas in an exciting, compelling, educational and entertaining manner. Now in its third year, the festival attracted an estimated 320,000 attendees.