Our goal was to create a considerable scientific background in various age groups by conducting engaging, enjoyable, and motivating activities, to make a significant change in how people around us perceive Synthetic Biology. We really wanted to present a perspective to all of these impressionable minds around us that fills them with a passion for this field, alongside presenting it as a lucrative career option for them in a monetary sense.
We really feel encouraged and validated for our efforts by the response we got from school-going students, especially D.A.V. Public School Gurugram, where the response truly exceeded all our expectations.
We will surely continue our efforts in this direction so that we can become a small yet significant part of the revolution in the field of technology.
iGEM IIT Delhi conducted seminars and lab workshops on synthetic biology in various high schools of Delhi. These workshops were aimed at informally introducing the students to this field. ‘Just like you join together Lego blocks to create structures, you can join together genes to create new biological systems’ was the main theme behind most of our workshops.
The session began with the basics of synthetic biology, iGEM, our projects. This was followed by a compendious presentation on ‘Ethical Issues in Synthetic Biology’, which involved discussion on Ethical issues like Bioterrorism, Patenting and Creation of Monopolies, Uncontrolled release, Creating Artificial Life etc.
In order to give students a flavor of lab work, we conducted an experimental workshop in their lab. The experimental workshop consisted of simple illustrations and some hands-on experience for them such as Plasmid isolation, Gel electrophoresis, Inoculation, streaking, etc. We further encouraged the school students to make a team of their own and participate in iGEM and assured full support from our side. Finally, we took the feedback and conducted a small survey based on general awareness. The workshops were successful as we could see students really getting excited about the entire idea of iGEM and seemed to be enthusiastic for the competition. In Fact, we received a letter of Appreciation (http://2017.igem.org/wiki/images/b/b8/T--IIT_Delhi--Certificate_DAV.pdf) from one of the school (DAV Public School Sector-14, Gurgaon, Delhi).
Feedback obtained from the students: 9.35/10 (Total No of students:196)
Open house is an annual event in IIT Delhi that is being conducted for the past 13 consecutive years, it aims to provide an insight into path-breaking research work and student projects in IIT Delhi. This year it was conducted on 22nd April. ‘iGEM IIT Delhi’ has been participating since the past four years and this time it was a real treat to the eyes of the connoisseurs. We presented our project to technology enthusiasts, students and colleagues from other technical Institutes, school children, industries and the general public. We also introduced them to synthetic biology and iGEM. It was a great motivation and encouragement to the students, colleagues, and school students to develop a greater interest in the field of Synthetic Biology. Especially school students were excited to participate in iGEM as a ‘High School’ team from India.
Tour of Stalls is IIT Delhi’s annual club orientation, which has an annual footfall of nearly 1000 students. This orientation was attended by the first year students and high school students. We ensured proper exposure of first-year students to synthetic biology and its multi-disciplinary aspects by setting up a stall at the Tour of Stalls. The students were also shown the team video, which excited them for joining the club.
Mr. Mahendra Sahare,a Ph.D. student, doing a humanities project under a Supreme Court lawyer, Dr. Naveen Thayyil, has been in collaboration with iGEM IIT Delhi for the past two years. Together, we have worked on the aspect of ‘Ethical Scientific Practices’. Also, on his recent visit to IISER Mohali, he came back with a collaborative offer for iGEM IIT Delhi to mentor IISER Mohali and help in the establishment of iGEM club there. On our return from the Giant Jamboree 2016, our team members gave a presentation scheduled there, initiated their team and thereafter our team mentored the iGEM Mohali team.
Tryst, IIT-D's technical fest, is one of the largest and most successful technical festivals across India. It seeks to bring together the world’s leading scientific minds and budding enthusiasts and witnesses an annual footfall of over 40,000. iGEM team IIT Delhi set up a stall and conducted the event ‘Biomaniacs’ a brainstorming quiz on biotechnology which was aimed at encouraging and promoting synthetic biology through interesting and creative ways to do this.
iGEM Team IIT Delhi sent its representatives to the Indian iGEM meetup which was held at IISER Pune and was attended by 9 iGEM teams from India and iGEM Peshawar (Pakistan, was on Skype conference). The purpose for this was to discuss projects and strategies among the teams and help each other with problems that were being faced. The possibility of collaboration was also discussed among other topics. The event ended with a friendly dinner. Being the most experienced team from India, iGEM IIT Delhi gave a good presentation at the meetup to other teams in terms of experience and well discussed and interacted among upcoming iGEMers.
We conducted four sessions on ‘Ethical issues in Synthetic Biology’ in a course of Professional Ethics & Social Responsibility (NEN100) at IIT. We addressed various Ethical Issues like Bioterrorism, Patenting and Creation of Monopolies, Uncontrolled release, Creating Artificial Life etc. in our sessions which was followed by an interesting ‘Case Study Discussion’ session wherein students were divided into groups and allocated the case study and asked to come and discuss the case study and identify the concerned Ethical issue, and draw the conclusions with the rest of the class. Finally, we took the feedback and conducted a survey which consisted of the questionnaire related to Ethics in Synthetic Biology.Also the course manager of PESR committee, Mr.Lavlesh Bhanot appreciated our initiative.(Letter of appreciation(http://2017.igem.org/wiki/images/0/00/T--IIT_Delhi--letter_nen.pdf)
Feedback obtained from the students on the workshop conducted: 8.3/10
(No of students:85)
It’s a course common to fresh entrants of IIT Delhi, it has an important role to play in terms of orienting and exciting students in the subject of engineering. iGEM IIT Delhi gave its orientation in one of the sessions of this course. Professors and around 850 undergraduate students attended the orientation. The main objective is to introduce students to synthetic biology, enlighten them about the products based on research in this field and how these products have an enormous impact on our day to day lives.
It is a student body in IIT Delhi which deals with matters related to academic affairs and co-curricular activities. iGEM IIT Delhi held its orientation on 15th Sept, 2017. It drew a huge crowd which included students from technology clubs of various colleges apart from IIT Delhi. Our work on various genetically engineered biological systems their practical applications were presented to them. An enthusiastic response is received from the audience.
iGEM IIT Delhi held a seminar for a group of first-year students of DBEB who had just taken admission into IIT. The students were introduced to the field of synthetic biology and were told about its tremendous potential. Then, students were taken to the lab and a first-hand experience of various simple processes like agarose gel electrophoresis, streaking and spreading were provided. The students were shown the entire lab. Many of the students were enthusiastic about taking up synthetic biology as a career as the event ended.
The main goal of our survey was to find out the reach of Synthetic Biology in the current school -going,college-going students and researchers in the field of Electrical Engineering.We got the survey filled by the students who attended our workshops in NEN sessions and schools since we wanted the students to fill our survey carefully after attending our workshop.It was filled out by 85 NEN students and 196 School going students.The Survey for Researchers was made out to be slightly more technical and was filled by 16 Researchers of our Institute.
The conclusion from our survey was definitely not as pleasant as we would have wanted it to be, but wasn't surprising as well.While a majority of students had not even heard of Synthetic Biology before we gave them a workshop, the response to our workshops stood in stark contrast to it.A special mention to the students of DAV Public school, Sector 14, Gurugram whose response to our workshop was way beyond our expectations and it really showed us the difference our workshop had made.As for Researchers, while only some of them knew about Biological Oscillators, most of them were interested in integrating their field of research with synthetic biology
Here is the link for the complete analysis of the survey of students. http://2017.igem.org/wiki/images/a/a3/T--IIT_Delhi--Survey_of_General.pdf
Here is the link for the complete analysis of Researcher’s survey. http://2017.igem.org/wiki/images/4/49/T--IIT_Delhi--research_survey.pdf
Our team raised a Fundraiser on ketto to meet with the financial needs of the project. It is not only a platform to raise funds but also gives instant validation and feedback of different people and help establish a marketing platform.
Project SWIM - Square Wave Insulin Modulator, a novel genetic oscillator emulating a periodic square wave, that can be used for timely drug delivery in Diabetes was presented on ketto, explaining it with help of a video prepared by our team members.The project was supported and shared by many on social media and donations were made by 18 supporters.
Here is the link to the crowd fundraiser at ketto: https://www.ketto.org/fundraiser/swim?utm_source=Exit_intent&utm_medium=fbpageshare&utm_campaign=swim
iGEM IIT Delhi was invited to deliver a lecture at the Indian Biological Engineering Meetup (iBEM) which was held at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) on 26-28th March, 2017, where we talked about the development of synthetic biology, and the path ahead.The meetup was attended by dignitaries, professors,and researchers from all over the country, and addressing them at the first ever edition of iBEM was really motivating to the audience and us alike. Here is the link : http://www.ibem.in/