Comic-Con Museum Featuring 16 Female Scientists at STEAM Fair

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Day two of Comic-Con kicked off Friday as thousands of fans and attendees packed the San Diego Convention Center Downtown for the event they’ve waited three years for.

Delays brought on by the global pandemic put a halt to the popular attraction.

Emily Schindler, the director of education for the Comic-Con Museum told NBC7 that the event was off to a solid start. While the majority of events are downtown, there’s another layer to Comic-Con that San Diegans can take advantage of through the end of the weekend at the museum.

Located just up the stairs from the Spider-Man exhibit at the Comic-Con Museum is If/Then, a STEAM fair that features 16 female scientists. Not only are these women showing the opportunities that exist for women in the field, but they are also showing the connection between Comic-Con and the world of science.

”There’s a lot of science in fandom,” Sam Wynns, a conservation biologist and ambassador for the event, said. “Many of our favorite popular arts you would not be able to have without the STEM behind them. Increasingly, Comic-Con has been adding science programming into their profile to the programs.”

From infectious diseases to earthquakes to how comets form, the room full of science experts provided hands-on experiments that give young minds a chance to explore a field that plays out in some science-backed movies like Interstellar.

“You know, things like space travel, or really being able to see and explore planets around other solar systems is really the foundation of a lot of Sci-Fi that we all love but now we’re going to find those planets and maybe sometime in the distant future, we’ll be able to go there,” Erika Hamden, a professor of astrophysics, said.

For rocket scientist and astronaut-in-training, Sydney Hamilton her experiment was grounded in shapes and structures and how they play a role when building rockets.

“Who knew that a bridge could be related to sending someone to space?” Hamilton said.

Wendy Bohan, an earthquake geologist, emphasized that science is really exciting, and through movies and TV, it gets people really thinking about it. She added what it meant to her to be a female scientist.

”I have a daughter and I think about her and she’s watching me do this,” Bohan said.

If/Then is not only bridging the gap between superheroes and science but it’s inspiring the next generation of scientists while highlighting the important work that women do in the field.

The event goes through the weekend from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Comic-Con Museum in Balboa Park. Tickets can be purchased ahead of time or at the museum.

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