“Astro-Phy Quench” – A project of “School of Astronomy and Physics

Considering limited opportunities / exposure to STEM fields for females and marginalized communities in Pakistan, Project “Astro-Phy Quench” aims to work on inclusion and diversity by engaging young females from remote areas and orphan students from the conflict-affected parts of Pakistan (due to war on terror).
“Astro-Phy Quench” sought to foster a sense of science identity through informal physics and astronomy-related blended learning interactions among:
1) Orphan students inclusive of both male / females from Sky School System and Pakistan Sweet Home in Islamabad (affectees of War on Terror).
2) Female high school students from sub-urban areas of Islamabad and remote area of Gilgit Baltistan.
Project will involve interactions: 1) Introductory course on Astronomy using online telescope 2) Introductory course on Particle Physics with hands on activity to build ATLAS detector Model, 3) International collaborations bringing early research exposure at high school level by; a) Virtual visits to large research infrastructures like Virgo (Gravitational Waves Observatory) & hands on activity to build Michelson interferometer Model b) Engaging small group of students to conduct a research project using light synchrotron 4) Guest talks and celestial observations.
Project aims to 1) Produce scientific literate youngsters among disadvantage groups acting as STEM ambassador for communities and pursuing STEM fields 2) Engage targeted groups to create scientific content (to be posted on Youtube channel); helping spread the word of science and inspire peers 3) Additional skills including data analysis using excel, communication skills and poster presentation. 4) Award monetary incentive for scientific content creators and student volunteers from community which would be a step towards encouraging students from low-income groups towards becoming STEM youtubers 5) Collaborating with community teachers, research institutes, scientists, and astronomical societies.