Students to Get a Serving of Science for Dinner

May 4, 2006

Girls from local high schools who are interested in science, technology, engineering and math will have dinner next week with researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL). But this dinner will offer a lot more than a three-course meal.

“Dinner With a Scientist” is slated for May 10 from 6:30 to 8 PM at Pleasanton’s Amador High School. The event will bring together 50 girls from the organization “MECCA” (Making Electives Count for Career Achievement) who are students in Livermore, Pleasanton and Dublin school districts and ten female scientists for a packed evening of learning, discussion, camaraderie and potential mentorship.

Students and scientists will have the opportunity to discuss the topic introduced by the keynote speaker, the scientists’ areas of expertise, educational requirements or student questions. This forum is designed to inspire young women who are active members of MECCA and have already expressed an interest in science, technology, engineering and math to further pursue opportunities in related field.

Recently, MECCA was the recipient of a $1,000 grant from the newly formed California Girls Collaborative Project, a group that brings together organizations throughout California that are committed to informing and motivating girls to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math. “California Girls” encompasses organizations from K-12 education, higher education, government, professional organizations, business, and the community. California Girls Collaborative Project Mini Grants are administered by the University of California’s Edward Teller Education Center, located adjacent to LLNL.

The MECCA grant covers “Dinner With a Scientist” in partnership with LLNL. The event promises to be the capstone experience for the MECCA program in the 2005-2006 school year. In selecting students to attend, priority will be given to those who had the greatest participation in the MECCA activities and field trips during the current school year.

For information about Livermore Lab scientists involved in “Dinner With a Scientist,” contact Gayle Pawloski at 925.423.0437. For information about the Tri-Valley ROP (Regional Occupational Program) MECCA Project, contact project director Ginny McGaha at 455.4800, ext. 109.

Founded in 1952, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory has a mission to ensure national security and to apply science and technology to the important issues of our time. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory is managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration.