Innovatum Science Center wants to inspire, engage and spread knowledge about science and engineering.
Innovatum in Trollhättan is one of six science centers in Västra Götaland. In the upcoming week, nine researchers from the Department of Biology and Biological Engineering will go there to participate in inspirational days, the so-called Futuradagarna (Future days). The researchers will hold short lectures for high school students, doing their second year studying science or engineering. They come from the three cities Trollhättan, Uddevalla and Vänersborg, and a total of about 350 students will get an insight in the field of life science during the inspirational days.
- It is important to present our research to the public, to young people but also to their parents and older generations. We do our work for the good of the society as a whole, and all of us need to get involved: We have the same goal - a better and sustainable world, says Dina Petranovic, associate professor at the department and also a member of the Innovatum advisory board.
- Many researchers actually want to talk about their work, but we are often missing platforms. It means a lot, both to us and to the public, to be able to present our research in this way.
Ingela Nylander, Director of Operations at Innovatum Science Center, is in charge of Futuradagarna. She is passionate about research and has a background in both Chalmers and AstraZeneca.
- We organized something similar for the first time last year, and the high school students found it very rewarding. They don’t see the road ahead in research, they do not understand what can be done. Today, everyone wants to have a creative profession. I would say that there is nothing more creative than being an engineer! As an engineer, you get the opportunity to constantly think of new things, she says.
During the lectures, the researchers will talk about their own research, what it may lead to, but also why they chose this particular topic, what inspired and attracted them. The fact that so many scientists from the Department of Biology and Biological Engineering showed interest in coming to Innovatum is just fantastic, Ingela Nylander says.
- The response was incredible, I was actually touched. It feels really great to be able to present the latest research for the students. In the future, their generation will conduct research on things that we can’t even imagine today.
The inspirational days have three themes: Life Science, Space and Sustainable Development. Chalmers will take a place in all three themes.
- The stated goal of these days is to inspire more people to study science and engineering, says Ingela Nylander.
Dina Petranovic adds a different perspective:
- I want the young people to understand that research is not something abstract, something that doesn’t concern them. No matter what profession they may choose in the future, I want them to know that this research is done. There are an incredible number of jobs that in various ways will have contact with our work. And also, in general it is important to understand what is happening in society, as well as in the scientific community. These young students must grow up to be thinking, critical individuals.
About Innovatum Science Center:
Innovatum in Trollhättan is one of six science centers in Västra Götaland and is similar to the more famous, and bigger, Universeum in Gothenburg. The center is a non-profit corporation, working towards schools and the general public to inspire, arouse interest and spread the knowledge of science and engineering.
The Department of Biology and Biological Engineering will continue to cooperate with Innovatum, for example through Dina Petranovic who is on the Innovatum advisory board. During this year they will work to design an exhibition on life science, scheduled to open in the spring of 2017.
Text: Mia Malmstedt