2018 Program - Kids' Tech University (KTU)    
2009 Lecture Kids’ Tech University is a semester-long event! In January, February, March, and April there is an all-day event that consists of an interactive session, which is centered on answering a question about the world around us, and a hands-on component, which features the Virginia Tech professors, students, clubs, and community. Kids can take part in the virtual labs and forum after the all-day event to continue to cultivate their interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
2018 Program of Events

January 27, 2018
How can we use computers to monitor the spread of diseases?
An interactive session led by Elaine Nsoesie, Ph.D.
Dr. Elaine Nsoesie is an assistant professor of Global Health at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington. She was trained as a Computational Epidemiologist through the Virginia Tech Genetics, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology program and the Biocomplexity Institute at Virginia Tech. She has a BS in Mathematics from the University of Maryland and a MS in Statistics from Virginia Tech. Her research is focused on the use of digital data and technology to improve health.


February 17, 2018
When cows compete, people win.
An interactive session led by Katharine F. Knowlton, Ph.D.
Dr. Katharine Knowlton is a Virginia Tech professor who grew up on a dairy farm in Connecticut. After earning degrees at Cornell University, Michigan State and the University of Maryland she came to work at Virginia Tech. She is now the Colonel Horace Alphin Professor of Dairy Science at Virginia Tech. She does research on environmental issues associated with the dairy industry, is the head of the Dairy Science undergraduate program, and teaches five courses in the department. Dr. Knowlton’s favorite thing to do in all the world is to judge cows. That is, she tells farmers which of their cows is the prettiest, and why. She judges cow shows around the world and coaches the Virginia Tech team that has won the national dairy judging championship 4 times in the last ten years!


March 17, 2018
So what’s in that stuff? The everyday chemistry that surrounds us.
An interactive session led by Francis Webster, Ph.D.
Dr. Webster has taught at Radford University for over two decades interacting with students at all levels. He is a winner of Radford University’s top teaching award, and his research efforts in sustainability have been funded by the National Science Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency. He is also the creator of the Magic of Chemistry, an age appropriate program focused on fostering a better understanding and appreciation for the role of chemistry in society. Since 2002, hundreds of invited presentations have been given with an outreach team involving Radford University chemistry majors and alumni. The team has engaged over 20,000 students, parents, and teachers in K-12 schools and other informal locations across the state.


April 07, 2018
Is tap water safe to drink?
An interactive session led by William Rhoads, Ph.D. and Siddhartha Roy
William Rhoads and Siddhartha Roy are environmental engineers and science communicators who work at the nexus of water quality, public health and environmental justice. They and their research team at Virginia Tech used citizen science, laboratory experiments, field sampling, investigative journalism and social media to expose the Flint Water Crisis. These efforts led to a declaration of a national public health emergency by President Barack Obama in January 2016, garnered more than $600 million in relief for Flint residents and informed a long overdue debate on "safe" water in America. Rhoads is a Postdoctoral Associate and Roy a PhD Candidate in the lab of Civil Engineering Professor Marc Edwards.