What Do Woodstock And Schrödinger's Cat Have In Common?

My friend Alan, an engineer, was prepping his son, Alex, for an upcoming science fair and had this conversation: "I was trying to explain quantum entanglement to Alex (he's 6). And that led to the discussion about Schrödinger's cat. And as I was about done with the setup for the cat experiment, Alex looks at me and says, "We're never getting a cat.""

I suspect Alex is well on his way to becoming an engineer/scientist/ailurophobic. And I bet he and Alan would love to take part in what is being billed as the Woodstock of science – the 3rd USA Science & Engineering Festival.

The aim of the festival is to get kids interested in science, technology, engineering and math so they will pursue those fields as careers.

“This nation suffers from a severe shortage of up-and-coming scientists and engineers,” says Ray O. Johnson, senior vice president and chief technology officer at Lockheed Martin, and Festival co-founder. “We need to spark a new generation of innovators by providing students with hands-on experiences that give them that thrill of understanding and a sense of accomplishment in solving difficult problems."

Throughout 2013 there will be several events including: Lunch with a Laureate program that will connect students with Nobel Prize winning scientists; Nifty Fifty (times 3) speaker program offering more than 150 leading scientists and engineers to speak in schools, with sessions videotaped for use in classrooms worldwide; and hundreds of satellite and affiliate events across the country all to generate excitement for the big USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C., April 26-27, 2014.

Yes, the Woodstock of science festival is more than a year-and-a-half away. But by that time Alex will be 8 and well versed in quantum entanglement. Who knows, he may even have a cat to keep his dog, Jarvis Doo, company.

To learn more, visit www.usasciencefestival.com. And if you have some time to kill, check out the Facebook page. I spent about 35 minutes scrolling through all the funny posters and sayings. Don't be surprised when you see a few of these shared on the Chemical Processing Facebook page.

Traci Purdum
Senior Digital Editor and a fan of Woodstock musicians and science fairs.

For more on the social media front, be sure to check out my page.