NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day

NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day

NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day
Assistant Dean of Science Ia Gomez during her welcome remarks.

The Manassas Campus celebrated the 61st anniversary of the discovery of the double helix DNA structure on April 21.

Assistant Dean of Science Ia Gomez has led and organized this event for four years with the assistance and participation of more than 40 student volunteers. The event started with an opening performance of an original rap composed by “The Nucleofives,” a group of NOVA students.

Student keynote speaker Amanda Harbison introduced guest speaker Dr. Pat Gillevet, the director of the MicroBiome Analysis Center (MBAC) at George Mason University. MBAC is researching the microbial communities (microbiomes) that reside in the human gut, mouth, urogenital and respiratory tracts. It has now become apparent that the human microbiome is implicated in social behavior, reproduction, growth, cognition, as well as many diseases.

NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day
Manassas students perform during DNA Day.

The presentation was followed by the DNA Art Contest awards ceremony, lunch, outdoors activities and live music. Activities included DNA face painting, DNA extraction from food, DNA candy, DNA LEGO structures, genetically modified food and DNA hair twist. The event concluded with the raffle of an iPad.

This year’s attendance exceeded 200 people. DNA Day was the kickoff of Biotech Week, consisting of a short presentation series by biotech students on environmental applications of biotechnology, biotech advising and pizza party, biotech movie night and a tour of the biotech lab facilities.

NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day
Biotech students Frank De Benedectis and Noah Rathbun served as event hosts.

For more information, please contact Gomez at igomez@nvcc.edu.

NOVA Manassas Celebrates National DNA Day
Jenny Nguyen, Michael Sibilo and Amanda Harbison.

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