BLACKSBURG, Va., July 5, 2011 – Kids’ Tech University (KTU) is introducing a new program that aims to connect the scientific community at Virginia Tech and elsewhere to the general public and the K-12 education community. The program bridges the gap between faculty, research staff, and Ph.D. students at Virginia Tech and elsewhere to form the KTU faculty.  KTU faculty members are available to visit schools, host groups of students and teachers, and serve as a scientific resource for K-12 educators, students, and their parents across the Commonwealth of Virginia and beyond. The program builds on the extensive network of researchers, teachers, children and parents KTU has built over the last three years. The program can be found at the KTU Faculty website, which makes available a database of researchers and educators hoping to find matches for their educational needs in all STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) areas.  Children, parents and teachers are all welcome to explore the contents of the site and connect with the KTU Faculty network.

Dr. Reinhard Laubenbacher, Director of Education and Outreach at VBI, noted:  “The KTU program is constantly evolving and adding new features. This new program gives students, teachers, and researchers a unique opportunity to find a match for their educational needs.  Through a quick database search, a connection that might otherwise never be made can be easily achieved. KTU faculty can serve as a vehicle that brings cutting edge research into the K-12 classroom.” In addition to the database, users can also learn about KTU programs and how to enroll. 

Friend KTU on Facebook and visit the KTU blog for updated information about programs and events or see the KTU homepage.

About Kids’ Tech University
Kids' Tech University (KTU; http://kidstechuniversity.vbi.vt.edu), is a pioneering educational initiative designed to excite children about science and provide them with a real university experience. Kids' Tech University was spearheaded by VBI in collaboration with the Virginia Cooperative Extension’s 4-H Youth Development Program. K-12 students, their parents and teachers, come to the Virginia Tech campus and they participate in a series of engaging scientific activities, including lectures by world-renown researchers and hands-on laboratory experiments. The goal is to expose K-12 students early to cutting-edge research in science, math, engineering, and technology to hopefully encourage them to pursue science careers.

About Virginia Bioinformatics Institute
The Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech is a premier bioinformatics, computational biology, and systems biology research facility that uses transdisciplinary approaches to science combining information technology, biology, and medicine. These approaches are used to interpret and apply vast amounts of biological data generated from basic research to some of today’s key challenges in the biomedical, environmental, and agricultural sciences. With more than 240 highly trained multidisciplinary, international personnel, research at the institute involves collaboration in diverse disciplines such as mathematics, computer science, biology, plant pathology, biochemistry, systems biology, statistics, economics, synthetic biology, and medicine. The large amounts of data generated by this approach are analyzed and interpreted to create new knowledge that is disseminated to the world’s scientific, governmental, and wider communities.

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Contact:
Tiffany Trent
(540)231-6822
ttrent@vbi.vt.edu

Published by Tiffany Trent, July 05, 2011