Jennifer Jewell reveals gateway to Chico’s past

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Published 2012-02-06T19:48:00Z”/>


Campus Spotlight

<em>The Gateway Science Museum sprung up 10 years ago from an idea from Ray Barnett, a professor of natural sciences.

The museum opened to the public in February 2010 and will be celebrating its two-year anniversary this month.

Jennifer Jewell, the volunteer coordinator at the Gateway Science Museum, helps organize many of the events the museum puts on for the public, such as last semester’s geocaching scavenger hunt.</em>

<strong>The Orion</strong>: What does the science museum have to offer students?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: We interact with college students on a variety of levels. First of all, we’re an excellent museum. Students are always welcome to come visit our exhibits as well as our workshops and lecture series.

<strong>The Orion:</strong> What kinds of exhibits do you have?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: We have a rotating display of exhibits every year, which we rotate about three times. We also offer quite a bit of opportunities to students to interact with younger people, with adult people, with special events, with teaching in a practical sense, which is like a teaching lab for

college students.

Right now we have a photographic display in this Valley Gallery that’s on macro-photography and then we have an exhibit called “Toys: The Inside Story,” which is a hands-on based exhibit on how simple toys work based on cams, gears, pulleys and among other mechanisms, so it’s physics based.

We have another one on noise and it’s all about the science of sound, what sound is and how it works. We also have a Discovery Room, which is a constant element in the museum. It’s all hands-on manipulative toys and mechanisms for kids to play with and explore and learn about.

<strong>The Orion</strong>: What exhibits are on display today?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: The mission of the museum is to create a place for life-long learning about the natural sciences, especially as they existed, exist and will exist in Northern California, so we have permanent displays such as our replicas of the prehistoric animal skeletons, the short-faced bear and the saber-toothed cat.

<strong>The Orion</strong>: What can you tell students about the architecture of the Gateway Science Museum?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: The building itself is one of our exhibits. The landscapes around the museum are based on the eco-regions of Northern California, so the mountain region,

the delta region and the riparian corridor.

<strong>The Orion</strong>: What are your favorite exhibits?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: I am a local garden writer and I have a garden program on state public radio. My heart is in the gardens.

<strong>The Orion</strong>: How can students get involved?

<strong>Jewell</strong>: We have a work study program with students and many of our dozens are full-time CSU students or Butte College students, and there are several classes at the university that hold their classes here, including scientific inquiry and science education.

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-Compiled by Paul Smeltzer


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