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Fox from Bob Jones attends BASF Science Academy in New Jersey

Nathan Fox (second row, far right) was among 20 students selected to participate in the prestigious BASF Science Academy program. (CONTRIBUTED)
Nathan Fox (second row, far right) was among 20 students selected to participate in the prestigious BASF Science Academy program. (CONTRIBUTED)

MADISON – Nathan Fox, a senior at Bob Jones High School, heard viewpoints from scientists and business leaders at the two-week BASF Science Academy.

BASF Corporation sponsored the academy at the Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, N.J. The academy accepts 20 prospective high school seniors for a preview of college life and an opportunity to learn advanced chemistry.

The seniors used the university’s classrooms, labs, dining hall, dorms and received college-level instruction. BASF covered the full cost of the program, including tuition and travel, and worked with university staff to develop the academy curriculum.

Academy graduates earned two transferable credits in college science. In addition, Fairleigh Dickinson University offered $5,000 scholarships.

With the curriculum “From Molecules to Marketplace,” students interacted with professors, BASF scientists and business owners during lectures, hands-on lab experiments and field trips. Their study ranged from environmental and other sciences to product marketing.

“BASF recognizes the importance of immersing students in science education, realizing they will be the thinkers, innovators and leaders of the future,” Mark Todd said. He is BASF site director in Huntsville.

“The academy aspires to develop the technology-based workforce of the future by exposing students to practical business applications and potential careers in chemistry,” Todd said.

The academy accepts high school seniors with one year of chemistry, an exceptional academic record and a strong interest in the sciences.

Working in teams, the students used BASF chemistry to formulate their own personal care products. They then developed business and marketing plans that they presented to a panel of BASF executives.

“I learned that business is super integrated in every science,” Fox said. “In addition to general chemistry and business topics, we learned about ecotoxicology and how relevant industrial waste is to sustainability.”

Fox’s favorite aspect “was meeting all these amazing people.”

Participants in the Science Academy Class of 2014 attended from Ontario, Canada and Northeast, Southeast and Mid-West sections of the United States.

For more information, visit Facebook/BASF Science Academy.

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