Our research group is actively involved in community outreach and dissemination activities at several levels:
K-12 and After School Programs
The Cornell Center for Materials Research CCMR currently reach underserved youth by collaborating with the Ithaca Youth Bureau (IYB). Located in Ithaca, NY, the Youth Bureau serves primarily African-American and low socioeconomic children in the Ithaca area. The CCMR runs monthly Saturday afternoon programs as part of the One to One program of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ithaca and Tompkins County. The Mission of One to One program is to establish and nurture friendships between caring, responsible adults and children with special need for such friendship. Through these friendships One to One seeks to improve the lives of children and their families, enable volunteers to themselves benefit from their relationships with children and families, and bring community members together. During these sessions the students and their mentors (Big Brothers and Big Sisters) are exposed to basic science concepts such as buoyancy, magnetism, electrical circuits, state of matter, etc. The modules are created and presented using a hands-on approach so they require active involvement of the students and the concepts can be easily assimilated. Photo: Professor Hinestroza explaining the concept of buoyancy using soda bottles at IYB.
We work with the LEAP (Living Environment Aging Partnership) through the Foundation for Long Term Care to incorporate a service learning component into the FSAD 466 Course (Textiles Apparel and Innovation).
This intergenerational effort, teaming up groups of undergraduate students with local community senior citizens, is aimed at using emerging technologies to improve the quality of living among local elders. The elders interact with the undergraduate students and in a collaborative way provide feedback and guidance on the students' designs. Several innovative products aimed at senior citizens including head protection gear, multifunctional walkers, smart medical textiles, and many others have been designed. At the end of the semester the elders and students present their projects to the public. Photo: Heather Burkman, center, explains her project on protective headgear to Louise Watt, 83, right, as teammate Emily Siegel and Professor Juan Hinestroza look on during a presentation in Martha Van Rensselaer Hall.
The Hinestroza Research Group works with the JumpStart Program of the Cornell Center for Materials Research. JumpStart projects allow small business to work with a faculty researcher and to have access to Cornell's research facilities for short periods of time to work on a specific problem. JumpStart is part of the Small Business Outreach Program which is funded by New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR) to help companies access Cornell resources and build productive relationships with faculty. Our group worked with Select Fabricators (Canandaigua,NY)in exploring new technologies and product improvements for electromagnetically shielding fabrics that can be used to create a low-cost portable enclosure to keep out or contain electromagnetic field.
REU (Research Experiences for Undergraduates)
Our group has a large numbers of undergraduate researchers at all times. These undergraduates are supported by individual grants and are integral part of our research work in the area of nanotechnology in textiles. Furthermore, we participate in the CCMR REU Summer Research Program. http://www.ccmr.cornell.edu/education/reu/index.html
Our group participates in several teachers' program including the Microworld Festival and the Materials Science Workshop. Recently Karmann Mills and Christina Diaz participated in outreach effort in New York City aimed at students and high school teachers serving underrepresented students. Karmann has also been very active in the Materials Science Workshop running an electrospinning demonstration to illustrate the ability of creating fibers using electrical fields.
Recently Camila Flor and Christina Diaz hosted a group of physics professors participating in the Center for Nanoscale Systems Institute for Physics Teachers and demonstrates the use of electricity to produce fibers from polymers that normally do not produce fibers
Photo: Camila Flor explain fiber science principles to visiting teachers during a session of the Center for Nanoscale Systems Institute for Physics Teachers
As part of an effort of the the Kavli Institute at Cornell for Nanoscale Science, we participated in a workshop that invited members of the news media to get a rare glimpse into the inner workings of complex nanoscience research. The journalists went on tours of Cornell facilities allowing them to connect with researchers and students, and allowing them to try their hands at scientific experiments. Professor Hinestroza was part of the closing events participating in a speed-scientific dating sessions with the journalists and delivering a short presentation on the use of nanotechnology in textiles.
Our group has also collaborated with Earth&Sky: a Clear Voice for Science ( http://www.earthsky.org) in the production of a 90 second radio show explaining our work on nanotechnology in textiles. The show was broadcasted on National Public Radio and it is available on the web.
Photo: Hekia Bodwitch participates in the recording of a PBS episode on Nanosilver and Nanotextiles
Our group recently collaborated with DragonFly TV, Emmy Award Winning PBS KIDS GO! show, on the production of a short episode on nanosilver and nanotextiles. The episode is part of the "Investigating the Nanoworld" series