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World Science Fair Coming To Pittsburgh Via Live Stream

The World Science Festival might be in New York City, but science enthusiasts can still take part without leaving Pittsburgh because Carnegie Science Center is live streaming two programs that align with its mission.

“Exploring the Amazon River to dig up a rare breed of leeches, repairing the Hubble Space Telescope, looking for the remains of our earliest ancestors,” Susan Zimecki, director of marketing and community affairs, said. “And afterwards we’ll talk about other STEM jobs that are available here in our region and about the programs that Carnegie Science does to prepare students for STEM careers.”

The first program, Alien Life: Will We Know It When We See It? focuses on the idea that Earth might not be the only location that harbors life - even if scientists have yet to prove it.

Various experts will discuss how they are studying the evolution of life here so they can recognize it elsewhere.

“The alien life panel includes a Nobel Prize winner who is a biochemist and geneticist as well as an astronomer, an astrophysicist and an astrobiologist,” Zimecki said. “It’s a rare, rare opportunity to hear experts of this caliber speak locally.”

The speakers include Dimitar Sasselov, Jack Szostak, Sara Seager and Paul Davies.

In the second program, Cool Jobs, award-winning science teacher Bob Pflugfelder, roboticist Chad Jenkins, astronaut Michael Massimino and archaeologist Becca Peixotto will talk about their careers.

Zimecki said the Science Center hopes this program will inspire kids to pursue jobs in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

“We regard again as one of our chief missions to prepare the next generation workforce for careers in STEM,” Zimecki said. “There is a burgeoning need for people skilled in these field locally and nationwide.”

According to Zimecki, the audience can email questions to the panels at the World Science Festival before and during the live streams.

Alien Life will be live streamed in the Buhl Planetarium May 31st at 8 p.m. It is free to the public, but registration on the Science Center’s website is required.

Cool Jobs will be live streamed at the Bayer Science Stage June 1st at 1 p.m. and is free with general admissions.