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AAAS Pacific Division Meeting Will Highlight Region’s Research

Cal Poly Pomona
The AAAS Pacific Division annual meeting will be held on the Cal Poly Pomona campus. | congvo/Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Pacific Division will explore science “From Atoms to Application” at its annual meeting in Pomona, California, from June 12-15.

The meeting, the 99th in the division’s history, will bring scientists, educators and students to the campus of Cal Poly Pomona for scientific symposia, workshops, field trips and more. The meeting, co-sponsored by Northwest and Southwest Regions of Sigma Xi: The Scientific Research Honor Society, the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, and Cal Poly Pomona, is open to all. Registration is required.

As one of three AAAS regional divisions – along with the Arctic and Caribbean divisions – the Pacific Division seeks to fulfill the AAAS mission in California, Hawaii, Idaho, western Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Alberta, and all other countries bordering or lying within the Pacific Basin, with the exception of mainland Mexico south to Panama.

Among the symposia with a particular local or regional focus are sessions on advancing structural engineering for earthquake resistance, the implications of foodborne pathogens for agriculture, discussions of the microbiome in the environment, health, and disease, and new paleontology insights from the La Brea Tar Pits. The tar pits, a site in Los Angeles where asphalt has seeped from the ground for thousands of years, are also the site of a field trip open to meeting attendees. Meeting attendees can also visit other Los Angeles-area sites, including the Getty Center, the Huntington Library or Icehouse Canyon in the San Gabriel Mountains to learn about the area’s hydrogeology.

The meeting’s theme – “From Atoms to Application” – is also on display throughout the agenda, with symposia focusing on advancements and applications in such fields as nanomaterials, renewable energy, pharmaceutical research and unmanned aerial systems.

Other activities include a Scientific Maker Exhibit, which returns for a third year to showcase projects that utilize “maker” technologies like 3D printing and Arduino sensors.

The meeting’s lectures will include public plenaries delivered on the opening night by Jon Snoddy, head of the research and development studio for Walt Disney Imagineering, on the future of entertainment; Joan Robinson-Berry, vice president and general manager of Boeing South Carolina, on aircraft engineering trends; and Jean-Pierre Fleurial of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology on spacecraft energy needs. Vilupanur A. Ravi, president of the AAAS Pacific Division and professor and chair of chemicals and materials engineering at Cal Poly Pomona, will deliver the division’s presidential address, to be followed by a reception hosted by Soraya Coley, university president of Cal Poly Pomona.

A variety of workshops each day will be open to meeting attendees on subjects such as communicating science to the public, grant writing, and active learning strategies. Several technical workshops will also be held on topics such as wearable fashion electronics and 3D printing.

The AAAS Pacific Division will also honor students who have delivered superior oral or poster presentations. Awards will be announced at the division banquet on June 14.

[Associated image: congvo/Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]