Colorado State University’s Little Shop of Physics and Native American Student Services Tour Four Corners Region

A group of Colorado State University students will do something a little different during their Spring Break: Ten students and volunteers will travel to the Four Corners region on an educational outreach tour to demonstrate how science can be fun.

Four students from Colorado State University’s Native American Student Services will join volunteers from the Little Shop of Physics for a tour of schools in southwestern Colorado and northwestern New Mexico. The Little Shop of Physics is a traveling hands-on science outreach program started at CSU in 1991. This is the 14th year that Little Shop has visited the Four Corners region, and the sixth year Native American Student Services has joined the program to tour the area.

The group will visit Ojo Amarillo Elementary School in Fruitland, N.M., on March 16 and Northwest High School in Shiprock, N.M., on March 17. Both schools are located on the Navajo Reservation. The group will then head to the Southern Ute Education Center in Ignacio, Colo., for programs on March 19 and 20. The education center is part of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe.

"The outreach trip provides an opportunity to show K-12 students that science is fun and exciting," said Ty Smith, director of Native American Student Services. "The visit also gives the visitors from CSU, who are not from the area, an opportunity to learn about the various cultures in the Four Corners region."

"This trip is important to me because it allows me to reconnect with my community and especially with the younger generation," said Derrick Benallie, a CSU junior from Kirtland, N.M.

Darryl Benally, a CSU junior from Farmington, N.M., said he is interested in the Spring Break trip to, "spark an interest in science in young minds."

Each visit to the schools involves hands-on science experiments for kids, plus after-school workshops for teachers to enhance their curriculum and an evening program aimed at parents and community members. The Four Corners outreach trip is supported by the John and Sophie Ottens Foundation, APS – Four Corners Power Plant, BP America Production Co. – Durango Operations Center and the Colorado State-based Center for Multi-Scale Modeling of Atmospheric Processes.

For more information, visit Little Shop of Physics at, the College of Engineering’s Women and Minorities in Engineering Program at or Colorado State’s Native American Student Services at