This initiative brings science to life for elementary students through hands-on science, technology, engineering and mathematics-based programs conducted under the guidance of enthusiastic scientists. The program aims to variety of scientific role models, many of whom are female.
Begun in 1989 by CFUW Ajax-Pickering, they first served 1000 kids in 40 Durham Region classrooms. Flash forward to 2016, the program has grown to reach over 660,000 students annually in 2,334 schools across Ontario and Alberta.
CFUW Guelph launched a chapter in 1999; to date, presenters have reached approximately 362,000 students in 13,410 classrooms in Guelph and area.
In 2001, Scientists in School received the Michael Smith Award for Excellence in Science Promotion, an award that honours individuals and groups who make an outstanding contribution to the promotion of science in Canada, through activities encouraging popular interest in science or developing science abilities.
Scientists in Schools initiatives do not end in the classroom. In 2013, they created a community workshop program which provides workshops to daycares, libraries, summer camps and other community groups.
Scientists in School has also expanded its outreach to a number of communities in recent years such as developing a French language workshop stream in Ottawa in 2012 and expanding into Calgary in 2014.
As of 2016, Scientists in School has reached 7.5 million young scientists across Canada since its inception.