Science STARS in Action: Developing Youth Identities in the Community
- Na'ilah Nasir, associate professor, University of California, Berkeley
- Shirley Brice Heath, professor emerita, Stanford University; and professor at large, Brown University
- Karen A. Peterson, CEO for the EdLab Group and Principal Investigator for the NSF projects National Girls Collaborative Project and SciGirls – A New National TV Series
Our Life. Our Meat. Our Story. is a short film created by 12 young women from East High School who wanted to know more about the meat they eat in their school cafeterias. During their three-month investigation, the Science STARS (Students Tackling Authentic and Relevant Science) visited a local slaughtering and processing plant; interviewed various nutritional scientists, farming experts, cafeteria directors, and family members; and explored the role that meat plays in their lives and the limited access city school district students have to healthy food options. This movie documents their journey to leverage both science and media to take on issues of power and have a voice in shaping their own lives and communities.
After a screening of the 10-minute film, three leading scholars of youth and identity development will discuss the work of the Science STARS in light of their own scholarship and larger academic conversations. All three scholars study ways in which mentored experiences outside of schools offer youth access to valuable identity resources embedded in authentic practice and work. Shirley Brice Heath, PhD, is a linguistic anthropologist who specializes in youth development, language, race relations, and organizational learning. Na’ilah Nasir, PhD, is a learning scientist who seeks to understand cultural and historical ecologies of learning, especially for African American youth. Finally, Karen Peterson, MEd, explores ways in which research-based practices can be utilized to create experiences that address issues of gender, racial, and socioeconomic underrepresentation in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). A community-wide question and answer will follow the panel presentations.
This film is not closed-captioned. For more information, to request special accommodations, and to RSVP, please contact Pam Kaptein at
firstname.lastname@example.org or (585) 276-5405.
Download a pdf file of the poster.