On January 25, the University of Arizona College of Nursing teamed up with the UArizona College of Medicine, Phoenix Campus, for the fourth annual Connect2STEM outreach event. Organized in partnership with Cox Communications, the family friendly event celebrates science, technology, engineering, math and medicine and is the largest STEM-related event held in Phoenix on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus. Last year, nearly 8,000 attendees took part.
Curious kids had a chance to make slime with the Arizona Ghostbusters, learned about gray matter at the Brainworks Lab, and interacted with SUNI the Robot – but one of the most popular attractions remains the Wildcat Play Hospital. Designed for kids ages 3-6 to learn the various roles health care providers play, the hands-on exhibit was staffed by eight UArizona Nursing students as well as eight faculty members.
"It’s so much fun to see our Nursing students realize just how much they’ve learned in their program. As they’re teaching these kids, you just see them light up. For me that’s just great because they always say that this experience really brought home to them how much they’ve learned during their studies.” ~ Amy Boise, Assistant Site Coordinator, Phoenix Masters Entry, UArizona Nursing
“The Wildcat Hospital has interactive activities for pretty much all ages,” says Amy Boise, Assistant Site Coordinator, Phoenix Masters Entry, Nursing, who is one of the coordinators of the Hospital. “They learn everything from how to do eye charts, to hand cleaning with UV germ lights, to bandaging boo-boos on dolls and stuffed animals.”
The Hospital also featured two pediatric simulation mannequins that kids will had an opportunity to examine using stethoscopes and reflex hammers. “We even have teaching stethoscopes,” says Boise. “Our nursing students have a set in their ears and the kids have one in their ears, and then we listen to their heart and lungs and tell them what the sounds are they’re hearing.”
Another popular feature of the attraction is the Wildcat photo booth, where kids donned a miniature white coat and stethoscope and posed for photos with their parents.
The event was rewarding for both the kids and the UArizona Nursing students who take part. “It gives children a real opportunity to see that there’s something for everyone in STEM,” says Boise. “But it’s also so much fun to see our Nursing students realize just how much they’ve learned in their program. As they’re teaching these kids, you just see them light up. For me that’s just great because they always say that this experience really brought home to them how much they’ve learned during their studies.”
Connect2STEM 2020 occurred Saturday, January 25 at the UArizona College of Medicine - Phoenix on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus, located at 475 N. 5th St. in downtown Phoenix. For more information visit the official Connect2Stem site.