2016 PAESTA Science Conference

Saturday, November 19, 2016 - Penn State Brandywine, Media, PA

  • Click here to register (Registration is free for PAESTA members)
  • Registration deadline: November 1st

In February 2016, The New York Times reported that “Science Teachers’ Grasp of Climate Change Is Found Lacking.” The article is based upon a paper published in the journal Science by Eric Plutzer and others titled “Climate confusion among U.S. teachers.” Keeping these reports in mind and wanting to address the need for increasing climate science content knowledge with K-12 teachers, PAESTA is introducing a new format for its fall conference in 2016. The PAESTA Science Conference will have three invited scientists come speak to PAESTA members about the basics of climate science, how scientists are currently studying climate, the climate of Pennsylvania, and the climate and possible habitability of exoplanets.

See the official conference press release. For those unable to attend, you can follow us on social media (Facebook and Twitter) during the event on our accounts and with the hashtag #PAESTA16.


Science Conference Agenda

8:30 AM Badge and conference bag pick-up opens
9:00 AM Welcome (Dave Curry, PAESTA President)
Award for Teaching Excellence (Citationist: Kathy Tait, PAESTA Past President)
Outstanding Service Award (Citationist: Laura Guertin, PAESTA Past President)
9:20 AM to 10:20 AM Dr. Benjamin Felzer (Lehigh University, contact page, Climate Voices bio)
Overview of climate science, what scientists are currently studying about climate
View Presentation - PDF 4.7MB
10:20 AM to 10:30 AM Break
10:30 AM to 11:00 AM Mr. Kyle Imhoff (State Climatologist of Pennsylvania, contact page, State Climatologist bio)
Climate of Pennsylvania, data available from State Climatologist Office
View Presentation - PDF 2.5MB
11:00 AM to 12:00 PM Dr. Ravi Kopparapu (NASA Goddard, contact page/NASA bio)
Exoplanet climate and atmospheres
View Presentation - PDF 17MB
12:00PM to 12:20PM Break, participants grab lunch and return to lecture room to eat
12:20PM to 12:30PM Review of climate resources on the PAESTA website (Christie Orlosky, PAESTA President-Elect)
12:30PM to 1:30PM Ask-A-Scientist panel. Moderator: Kelly Hunter (PAESTA Secretary/Treasurer)
1:30PM Meeting Concludes

Conference Logistics

The conference will be held at Penn State Brandywine in Media, PA (directions to campus). Parking is free and available in the large lot along Middletown Road/Route 352.

All events will be held in the Main Building (see campus map, Building #2) on the first floor. Badge and conference bag pick-up will be in the first floor hallway. Note that this is a different location than previous PAESTA Conferences held at Penn State Brandywine! There will be multiple events taking place on campus this day, so be sure to follow the campus map to the Main Building.

Be green! Bring a water bottle to refill during the Conference. Beverages will not be available on campus during the morning, so feel free to bring your own coffee/tea to start the day!

We want to thank the following organizations for providing materials and resources for the conference bag: NOAA, NOAA Fisheries, NASA Global Precipitation Mission, NASA Space Place, SERC (Science Education Resource Center), AGU (American Geophysical Union), Univ. of Texas-Austin, HHMI - BioInteractive, National Park Service, American Geosciences Institute.

If you are arriving in town the evening before the conference, we recommend spending your Friday evening at Wyndham Garden Glen Mills (Baltimore Pike) or any of the other area hotels. We do not have a block of rooms reserved at any one hotel.

Please contact us with any questions about the conference: paesta@psu.edu


Conference Follow-Up

Conference attendees requested some additional resources relating to items and topics discussed at the conference. Please review the information we have included below, and contact us if you have any remaining questions or requests.

PAESTA Navigation - Climate Science (our collection of PAESTA and non-PAESTA resources on climate, including scientific data and teaching materials)

Climate Central - home page, education page, WXshift, States at Risk, Surging Seas - Sea Level Rise

Topics of discussion

Materials in the conference bag

  • AGI Workforce Inforgraphic (career wheel) (webpage)
  • AGI 2015 Median Salaries for Geoscience-Related Occupations (webpage, PDF)
  • AGI Total Employment in the Geosciences, 2014 (webpage, PDF)
  • AGI Industries Hiring Recent Geoscience Graduates in 2015 (webpage, PDF)
  • EPA - What Climate Change Means for Pennsylvania (August 2016, webpage, PDF, all states)
  • EPA - Climate Change Indicators in the United States 2016 (webpage, PDF)
  • AGU - Exploring Earth and Space coloring book (PDF)
  • NOAA Species in the Spotlight (from bookmark set, webpage)
  • NOAA - The Essential Principles of Climate Literacy (webpage, Climate Literacy Framework PDF)
  • USGS Earthshots - Satellite Images of Environmental Change (webpage)
  • NOAA/NASA SciJinks (It's all about the weather) (webpage)