Just moments down the street, the Ontario Science Centre (OSC) holds a special free event for high school students on select Fridays four to five times a year. The OSC aims to raise scientific awareness among youth aged fourteen to nineteen, and offers activities, speakers, and snacks through Sci Fri.
Sci Fri began with the opening of the Weston Family Innovation Centre in 2006, but officially kicked off in September 2007. It is a youth-focused event that showcases special exhibit highlights. Previous Sci Fri events featured stargazing, video games, tattoos, as well as presentations on oceans, inventions, and space.
“The goal of Sci Fri is to present science in a social setting with a global outlook,” said Donna Francis, a researcher and program organizer at the OSC. “It is meant to be a different way to look at science, by relating it specifically to youth and the real world. Sci Fri is a great opportunity to experience science in a new way.”
Every Sci Fri has its own theme; each combines scientific concepts with real-world applications. It’s an informal, fun evening, with games, discussions, and DJs playing music. The OSC also offers access to the special exhibit (currently Game On 2.0, dedicated to video games), along with a unique activity, like airbrush tattoos or game shows. Sci Fri attracts between 75 to 185 participants per event.
The next Sci Fri (“The Art of Science and the Science of Art—Video Game Style!”) will be held this upcoming Friday, 3 May from 6PM – 9PM. Participants will have exclusive access to the Game On 2.0 exhibition, with over 150 playable games.