2020 Event Canceled

We are sorry to announce that Grandparents University, scheduled for June 25–26, has been canceled.

Guided by Tippecanoe County public health and safety officials, Purdue University has canceled all public events scheduled through June 30, 2020, due to ongoing concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic.

We are disappointed we aren't able to share in the joy of the memories made during GPU; however, the health and safety of the Purdue community is our top priority.

Please contact Purdue Conferences at 765-496-6205 or conferences@purdue.edu with questions.

We appreciate your understanding, and we look forward to welcoming you to GPU next year.

SAVE THE DATE

Grandparents University — June 24–25, 2021

Purdue Grandparents University Majors

Grandparents University offers a wide range of majors taught by Purdue faculty, staff, and graduate students from various disciplines. You and your grandchild will stay together in the same major for the entire two-day program. An adult must accompany each child at all times during the activities related to the major.

Please select majors based on your grandchild’s age, his/her physical activity level, and your physical activity level. Each major’s age range has been carefully determined based on the focus and scope of the activities.

Guide to Physical Activity Levels

Levels of physical activity vary among majors and field trips, so please read the descriptions carefully and choose what best suits your physical abilities:

  • Low: Most activities and tours take place indoors, with some walking required. Majors will have mostly seated activities.
  • Medium: Some movement and walking required between classrooms and venues, which may include stairs. Long periods of standing may be required, outdoor activity is possible.
  • High: Significant movement and physical activity, including walking or hiking outdoors.

Every attempt will be made to honor accessibility requests made in advance.

Majors for 2020

Aeronautical/Astronautical Engineering

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Low

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away — no, wait! Actually, this June at a university right here in Indiana! From the moon to Mars, from the stars to the great beyond — discover the intersections of engineering and creativity that make encountering space through capsules like the Apollo 11 a reality.

Examples of activities:

  • Construct a model rocket
  • Explore space

Animal Sciences

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Medium

We take the products at our local grocery stores for granted every day, but milk and eggs don’t just come from the back of a truck. Gain a better appreciation for animal agriculture by exploring the fundamentals of raising animals and proper animal management and welfare.

Examples of activities:

  • Make animal-based food products such as cheese, steak, and sausage
  • Understand the anatomy and diets of production animals
  • Conduct an ultrasound on a pig

Baking Science

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Low

What’s the difference between baking powder and baking soda — and are they interchangeable? What about everyday favorites, like chocolate chip cookies? They seem simple enough, but each ingredient has its own job when it comes to the final product.

Examples of activities:

  • Learn to read recipes
  • Bake cookies and muffins
  • Test recipes by varying ingredients

Biology

Age Group: 11-14
Activity Level: Low

Delve into the nature of scientific inquiry through experiments and hands-on investigations conducted in a research laboratory. Discover the wonders of DNA, the tiny molecule that contains the genetic code for living things.

Examples of activities:

  • Extraction of DNA from strawberries
  • Egg embryo lab demonstration

Clinical Diagnostic Detective

Age Group: 11-14
Activity Level: Medium

Explore the inner workings of the body! Discover the amazing ways the body works to keep you healthy. First, learn all about the kidneys, one of the body’s main filtration organs. Then, tackle immune response and how cellular components work together to fight off infection.

Examples of activities:

  • Illustrate the permeability of the kidneys’ filtration mechanism — and how certain diseases alter how they work
  • Examine changes in blood viscosity connected to inflammation, the first step in immune defense

Engineering Everywhere

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Low

Experience how engineers make a difference — and how you can make a difference, too! Your unique talents and interests can be incorporated into the design process that engineers use every day to solve real-world problems! Apply your imagination and creativity to hands-on projects. No engineering experience necessary!

Examples of activities:

  • Build a roller coaster prototype with creative materials
  • Design and build a helmet

Exploring Atmospheric Chemistry

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Medium

Discover our atmosphere — and its effects on our physical world. We will explore various elements in the atmosphere and how these elements can help us uncover more about the world around us.

Examples of activities:

  • Find out how clouds are made
  • Collect data
  • Learn how research scientists apply this data

FIRST Robotics

Age Group: 11–14
Activity Level: Medium

Want to design and build your own robot? Learn how to construct a LEGO robot, and then test it out in head-to head competition in a robot sumo tournament. Will your robot come out on top?

Examples of activities:

  • Design and assemble a combat LEGO robot
  • Learn programming to make your robot move across the playing field

Hands-on STEM through Agriculture

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Low

Learn how STEM disciplines — science, technology, engineering, and math — make a huge impact in peoples’ lives! Engage in hands-on activities that demonstrate how STEM enhances our world through food, health, and genetics.

Myths and Legends

Age Group: 11-14
Activity Level: Low

Discover how stories of legendary monsters, heroes, and villains help us define the boundaries of what it means to be human. Uncover how language itself constitutes a kind of magic — and how no model of heroism, charisma, and power comes without its complications.

Examples of activities:

  • Mete out Anglo-Saxon justice — can you use the ancient practice of restitution (weregild) to stop the cycle of blood feud?
  • Learn what to do in a riddle game and why you should never tell a dragon your true name
  • Develop your own pirate code

Nanotechnology

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Medium

Imagine a world that’s too small to see! Learn about nanoscale science and engineering and their impact on society. Engage with engineers and scientists to discover the promising development of revolutionary materials and technologies.

Examples of activities:

  • Manipulate liquid crystals, thin films, magnet racers, and gummy capsules
  • View a nano ice cream demonstration
  • Tour the nanotechnology center’s mock cleanroom

Nuclear Engineering

Age Group: 11–14
Activity Level: Low

Experience what it’s like to operate Purdue University’s nuclear reactor, equipped with the nation’s only digital control system. Find out how engineers protect against radiation, and learn about the interface between what we code and what we touch!

Examples of activities:

  • Measure radiation levels on Purdue’s campus
  • Identify unknown radioactive material
  • Operate Purdue’s nuclear reactor

So You Want to Run a Restaurant

Age Group: 7-14
Activity Level: Medium

Got an idea for a restaurant? Join seasoned professionals in planning and running a mock restaurant. Build a menu, set up the dining room, prepare and serve the food, keep the guest happy — oh, and learn how to make money while you do it!

Examples of activities:

  • Develop restaurant theme and menu
  • Prepare and serve food in an industrial kitchen
  • Practice front-of-house customer service

Urban Agriculture

Age Group: 7–14
Activity Level: Medium

Ready to get your hands dirty? Learn how to care for urban livestock such as bees, chickens — and even goats! Dig into how to grow your own food in an urban area using hydroponics and aquaponics.

Examples of activities:

  • Indoor herb garden
  • Aquaponics kit
  • Bee-keeping

Wildlife and Aquatic Sciences

Age Group: 11-14
Activity Level: High

Find out how scientists discover what critters live in different places. When you head home, you’ll have the tools to find out what kinds of wildlife are living in your own backyard. You might be surprised!

Examples of activities:

  • Electrofishing: discover what aquatic organisms are living in the water
  • Scent stations: identify track marks or footprints
  • Dart gun: collect data from larger animals

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