We invite everyone to meet our team and help start some of our experiments!
May 24, 2017
BENEFITING: Baltimore Underground Science Space
FANTASTIC AND IMPORTANT UPDATE!!!! We are proud and extremely grateful to announce that Becton Dickinson (BD) Diagnostics has committed 18,000.00 for the iGEM team! We appreciate this enormous offering and will use it wisely! We are more than half-way there to fund our team of Baltimore high school students trying to save the world! Read on below to find out what we are doing to save the world and why we are raising this money! Thank you!
Our story (in brief): Our high school student team, the “Baltimore BioCrew”, needs your help to clean up plastics in our community! The BioCrew is participating in iGEM, the international genetically engineered machine competition, a multifaceted program that gets students working as at team to accomplish an impressive and expansive project. We are 14 ambitious students from all around Baltimore city that have an incredible opportunity to use biology and engineering to degrade and eliminate plastic waste in our environment. Our team is entered in the competition and ALL OF US (plus a few of our cool mentors) want to go to the “Giant Jamboree” conference in Boston in November. We recognize this conference is a life-changing event that will impact our future educational endeavors in numerous ways!
At the Giant Jamboree we will get to
1) present and receive valuable feedback on all their accomplishments
2) interact and learn from students from all over the world
3) interact with representatives from colleges and universities.
Our team is hosted and mentored by Baltimore Under Ground Science Space (BUGSS), a non-profit 501c3 community science lab located in Baltimore City. Your generous donation directly supports us so we can attend the iGEM conference in Boston and show the world how really awesome Baltimore City high school students are!
The story (in depth): Baltimore Under Ground Science Space (BUGSS), a non-profit 501c3 community science lab located in Baltimore City, is mentoring 14 high school students in the international genetic engineered machine (iGEM) competition!
Learn more about Baltimore BioCrew – This year’s team has grown to 14 students from the original six last year. Check out these links to the articles published about last year’s team:
The Sun: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-plastic-eating-bacteria-20161116-story.html
Here is a link to the Baltimore BioCrew's 2016 iGEM wiki page. http://2016.igem.org/Team:Baltimore_BioCrew
BUGSS has been organizing us to have a meeting every month since January this year- where we have been learning, preparing, and discussing the intricacies of this comprehensive complex project! Starting in June we will be meeting every week to work in the lab at BUGSS to accomplish a myriad of goals.
The goals of our team can be broken down as follows:
“Wet Lab Work” –
1) Use biological engineering to create new constructs in bacteria that will degrade plastics
2) Test these constructs for enzymatic activity to verify they can break down plastics
3) Develop and engineer a prototype in the lab to test how we will use this outside of the lab
“Dry Lab Work” –
1) Develop our website development, learn coding
2) Use math modeling to address key questions in our project
3) Use bioinformatics to identify new possible enzymes to test in the future
“Social Lab Work” –
1) Mentor and guide younger students in a science project over the summer using wax worms to degrade plastics
2) Attend science fairs and other events in the community to discuss our project and introduce people to biological engineering
3) Have an event at BUGSS where we invite the community to learn about our project and discuss ideas for the future
What does your generous and kind donation actually pay for?
1) It costs $4500 dollars for Baltimore BioCrew to enter iGEM as a team
2) It costs each student $695 to attend the Giant Jamboree
3) It costs each student $340 to travel to Boston
4) It costs each student $185 for hotel
5) It costs each student $100 for meals
6) It costs $250 for each student membership to BUGSS. This enables a student to perform lab work to create their project, and provides training, mentoring, equipment and supplies.
What do you get for donating? Baltimore BioCrew will put your name or company name on their website as a donor! We will also invite ALL DONORS to come visit BUGSS to see Baltimore BioCrew present their work in September! Those who support our team with a donation of $250 or more will have their name on our iGEM t-shirts worn by our team during our public events and at the Giant Jamboree!
Learn more about iGEM –
The International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) competition is an annual event open to undergraduate teams, high school students, and community labs like BUGSS from around the world. Explore the iGEM website: http://igem.org/About It's kind of a big deal, with teams working all year to make their own genetic machines from existing and novel parts. Examples include a rainbow of pigmented bacteria, banana and wintergreen smelling bacteria, an arsenic biosensor, Bactoblood, and buoyant bacteria. Know any high school wiz kids who love science? This is a great opportunity to let their creativity flow and build a genetic device of their own design.
Learn more about BUGSS –
BUGSS is a community lab space for amateur, professional, and citizen scientists, makers, artists, creative thinkers, engineers, and biology/technology enthusiast. If you have a curious brain and passion to learn and create, BUGSS is the place for you! We offer an array of workshops, hands-on lab course, free community lectures, and other interactive gatherings to enhance the knowledge, sills, communication and appreciation of biology and technology. BUGSS members and class participants have access to an equipped molecular biology lab, 3D printers, and project assistance. Meetings, communications, and interactions between members and the community help to develop projects and experience through constructive feedback. We aim to provide the community with a place of learn and have fun with biotechnology in a safe and socially responsible manner, where scientific and artistic explorations in biotechnology intersect. Website: http://www.bugssonline.org/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/BUGSSlab Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BUGSS-Baltimore-Under-Ground-Science-Space-275707269195705/ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bugss-baltimore-underground-science-space-943b98b9/
(Photo credit for first two photos: John Dean