Letter to the Community
18 December 2015
Winter has finally arrived here in Boulder, where about 45 centimeters of snow fell this week. My son's school was closed in what is known ecstatically by most children here as a "snow day!" and I actually saw people skiing down a quiet side street in my neighborhood.
Snow, winter, holidays, the New Year. It's a busy time as 2015 draws to a close. Befitting the 20th Anniversary Year, this has been a remarkable year for The GLOBE Program. Much has been accomplished. We now have:
- A new website
- A revised version of the Teacher's Guide
- The GLOBE Educator Fellowship
- The establishment of four Working Groups
- A doubling of the number of scientists who have joined the GLOBE International Scientists' Network
- Three new GLOBE countries!
- The launch and rapid adoption of the GLOBE Data Entry app
GLOBE is growing and changing... and for the better (as so many of you have told me!). There are many new developments and events in the works for the year ahead. Listed here are a few of them:
The 20th GLOBE Annual Meeting and Student Research Experience
The 2016 event will be held in Estes Park, Colorado, USA, from 17-22 July, hosted by GLOBE Partner Deanna TeBockhorst and the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) Center for Science Education Director John Ristvey, in collaboration with the GLOBE Implementation Office.
This meeting is open to all members of the GLOBE community and we welcome you to join us in beautiful, mountainous Estes Park, located at the entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park and just an hour's drive from The GLOBE Implementation Office. You won't want to miss it, so put the dates on your calendar and plan to attend what promises to be the best annual gathering yet. If you need a personalized letter for the purpose of obtaining a visa to enter the United States, email Katy Lackey, who will provide one for you.
2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair
This event is right around the corner and now is the time to get serious about it, if you haven't done so already. All GLOBE students from K-12 are invited to participate in the 2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair. One requirement of all students is that they use GLOBE data (and enter data into the GLOBE database) for their projects. Read all about the 2016 International Virtual Science Fair here.
A webinar: "Preparing for the 2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair: An Overview of Resources and the Rubrics" took place on 16 December has been archived here. The webinar provided an overview of available resources for teachers and students, and covered the details of the scoring rubrics.
Deadline for submission of student projects is 11 March 2016. Scores and badges will be announced on 22 April. On that day, all eligible projects will be entered into a drawing to award stipends that will help defray travel costs to the GLOBE Annual Meeting and Students Research Experience in Colorado, mentioned above. More about the drawing below!
The 2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair Drawing
Eligible projects entered for the 2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair have the opportunity to be selected for a stipend to help defray the cost of attending the 20th GLOBE Annual Meeting and Student Learning Experience in Colorado, USA, in July 2016. To be considered eligible, students must earn a four-star research badge and at least two other four-star badges. Read about eligibility requirements in more detail on the science fair webpage.
Funding for the awards comes from Goldman Sachs Foundation (GSF), a global philanthropic organization, whose mission is to promote excellence and innovation in education; to help promote international literacy; and to raise students' awareness of the world's diversity. In 2004, The GLOBE Program achieved the GSF Excellence in International Education Award. GLOBE will use a portion of the funds that accompanied the award to facilitate travel to the 2016 GLOBE Annual Meeting for students around the world, in order to provide them with the opportunity to learn about each other's countries, environment, and culture.
Awards will be will be presented, by drawing, from among all eligible projects entered in the 2016 GLOBE International Virtual Science Fair. The monetary value of the awards is as follows:
- $2,000 for international projects ($2,000 per project awarded to 2 projects)
- $1,000 for US projects ($1,000 per project awarded to 2 projects)
The greater awards to international projects will compensate for greater cost of travel.
The rewards are significant for every student who enters the Virtual Science Fair! Students can practice the skills they have learned through GLOBE; work with scientists to develop projects; and showcase their work for participants around the world. The opportunity to be selected for a stipend to help with the cost of attending the GLOBE Annual Meeting and Student Learning Experience is just one more incentive for students to enter the 2016 International Virtual Science Fair!
One significant change on the horizon in 2016 is the expansion of opportunities for Citizen Science. GLOBE students have been doing "Citizen Science" for the past 20 years by engaging in data collection, entry and analysis; partnering with scientists and Earth observing satellites; and participating in scientific measurements.
However, more and more people want to engage in the process of scientific investigation. There have never been so many watchful eyes on the sky, our lakes, rivers and oceans, our air and our soil. Science is increasingly looked to for answers to our changing environments, and more and more people -- including retired GLOBE teachers, GLOBE alumni, and parents -- want to take part and contribute data. Technology is leading the way; the development of new mobile apps will soon make it possible for anyone with the apps, in participating GLOBE countries, to enter data into the GLOBE database.
The world is changing and so are we. GLOBE, a world leader in Earth Science education, will be at the forefront of making global learning and observations to benefit the environment accessible and meaningful for everyone, young and old, in school and out, in every corner of the world. GLOBE has already built a culture of cooperation and inclusion. Extending beyond the schoolyards, and put into practice within families and communities, and among nations, GLOBE will become stronger, more impactful and more relevant. I'm looking forward to extending the possibilities for GLOBE, and I hope you are too.
Before I close, here are a few additional reminders:
Distinguished Educators Fellowship
The deadline to apply for the Distinguished Educators Fellowship has been extended to 5 January. Read all about this opportunity here.
2015 GLOBE Annual Survey
Partners, Scientists, and Teachers: please complete the 2015 GLOBE Annual Survey, which arrived in your inbox on 15 December.
The Advanced Data Access Tool is here!
Also known as ADAT, the tool allows you to find and retrieve GLOBE data using several different search parameters. Be sure to have a look.
I wish you all the best as 2015 draws to a close. I'm proud of the new energy that is palpable within the GLOBE community and thank you for your many contributions. Looking forward, with enthusiasm, to 2016.
Dr. Tony Murphy
Director, GLOBE Implementation Office