Johnny Bravo was a prime crime suspect for fourth-, fifth- and
sixth-graders participating in El Centro Student Services’ 13th
annual Math, Science and Technology Day Wednesday.
A detective game involving cartoon characters like Johnny Bravo
and Spongebob SquarePants was one of the many programs offered.
Other activities included an electricity workshop, a
demonstration by Poudre Fire Authority, a Little Shop of Physics
presentation and a Harry Potter show.
“Really, the objective is to encourage kids to enter the fields
of math, science and technology,” said Rich Salas, assistant
director of El Centro Student Services. “Although it is catered for
all kids, we do have a purpose of trying to get underrepresented
kids interested because historically they don’t enter those
The programs featured taught students about math, science and
technology through hands-on experiments with CSU students and
“They’re trying to get everything to go through all three phases
of matter,” said Joe Messer, a junior chemistry student helping put
on the Harry Potter show. “I like helping out with the kids.”
The children were happy to be there, too.
“I think it will be really interesting to hear about things we
haven’t learned about yet,” said Franny Creegan, a sixth-grader
from Lab Elementary School, 223 S. Shields St. “Then you can store
it in your mind and think about if you want to learn more.”
Lupe Salazar, director of El Centro, is hoping that is exactly
what this program will do.
“Young people needed to know at a very young age what careers
were available,” Salazar said. “You receive an exposure to other
students and to professors.”
Exposure to a university campus can light a fire in children who
may not otherwise be interested in going to college, said Randia
Morrows, a counselor for Educational Talent Search, a program
affiliated with the Center for Educational Access and Outreach at
“It’s just a great experience to be on a college campus starting
to see people that look like them,” Morrows said. “It’s very
Salazar strongly encouraged the children to apply what they
learn to their everyday lives.
“Math, science and technology is a lot of fun and we do it
every, every day,” Salazar said. “We’re here to learn and we’re
here to have fun.”