Gary Freitag talks on a ham radio in this 2015 file photo. (KRBD photo)

A Women of Science event on Saturday offers local girls the opportunity to learn a little bit about science topics through fun, informative workshops.

The all-day event at the University of Alaska Southeast Ketchikan campus focuses on aspects of STEM – science, technology, engineering and math – with presenters from each area leading workshops.

The event is organized by the local Girl Scouts, but is open to all Ketchikan girls from kindergarten through 12th grade.

Gary Freitag, the local Alaska Sea Grant coordinator, is one of the presenters. He said his presentation focuses on oceanography. It will start with a presentation of videos taken underwater – as deep as 400 feet – of an extinct volcano in the Eddystone Rock area.

“They’re gonna get to see what it was like down at that depth, with giant sponges and big cloud sponges, things like that,” he said. “And then it also has video of what it looks like right at the surface, at the dock.”

That includes time-lapse video of invasive species, using images taken over the course of a couple years for an ongoing study of invasive marine species in the area.  

Freitag said he’s also going to collect some live zooplankton for the workshop participants to look at up close and personal.

“We’ll have four microscopes in which the students will have a hands-on experience to identify some zooplankton in the marine environment that we have right in our surface waters here in Ketchikan,” he said.  

The Women of Science-STEM day is 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the UAS Campus. Girls must be accompanied by a troop leader or guardian, and there is a small fee to participate.