Thanks to over 4000 visitors, 200 OIST volunteers and 12 delicious food vendors, including OIST’s Kaito+ Café, Open Campus 2013 was a huge success. Only an hour after the day’s schedule officially started at 10:00 on Sunday March 3, the parking lots were full and youngsters and their parents were exploring the halls and laboratories of OIST. Every exhibit was packed with people with beaming smiles on their faces, from the giant soap film display that spanned the Lab 2 stairwell to the tours of the rows and rows of tanks in the Zebra Fish Facility.
“We were amazed at how many more exhibits there were this year compared to the previous two years,” said Akari Ohguro, a mother living in Okinawa who has come to visit OIST on Open Campus Day with her children all three years the event has taken place. “My daughter especially liked looking through microscopes at fruit flies with different mutations. She even said that exhibit made her think about being a scientist herself one day.”“We wanted to have more exhibits this year for multiple reasons,” said Tomohiko Teruya, head of the Community Relations Section at OIST, who led the planning of Open Campus 2013. “Not only do we have even more talented researchers working at OIST this year, but we also knew we’d have more visitors this time around too.” In fact, numbers were up by over 1000 visitors compared to Open Campus 2012.
Many visitors, both children and adults, also seemed to have left OIST amazed at how devoted researchers are to their work. “Before I came to OIST, it was hard to imagine being so devoted to a single subject, but now being a scientist seems like it would be a lot of fun too,” said Mia Komura, who attended Open Campus with her mother and brother. “I want to know more about science now.”
To see a photo album of OIST's Open Campus 2013, please follow this link.
To see a video of the event, watch here.