Our mission

The mission of Carolina Science Outreach is simple: the popularization of scientific ideas to the people of South Carolina.

Our goal is to reach out to people of all ages, from elementary, middle, and high school students, to adults in the community at large. We hope to take various topics in science, whether they be those of Wind Energy initiatives in SC, Particle Colliders in Switzerland or discussing scientific validity in movies, and deliver them in an effective yet enjoyable fashion.

Science for everyone

CSO was founded in 2010 by Reggie Bain, Jim Talbert, and Sam Johnson with a research grant from USC's Magellan Scholar undergraduate research program. CSO strives to communicate science with audiences of all ages from K-12 students to adults. Our hope is to not only promote scientific awareness but also to foster a lifelong interest in science and, for our younger audiences, perhaps even a desire to pursue a career in STEM oriented fields. From 2011-2013, CSO was funded by the Carolina Leadership Initiative and has flourished as a student organization at USC.

Now under the direction of USC junior Connor Bain, CSO currently has over 50 members and is the only science outreach student organization on campus. Since 2010 CSO has presented to thousands of students across South Carolina on various topics in science such as elementary particle physics, astronomy, plant biology, computer science, and mathematics. In 2012, co-founders Reggie Bain and Jim Talbert also presented Leadership in Science to over 1000 elementary school students at New Providence Elementary’s “Leadership Day.” Current director Connor Bain worked with the Richland County Public Library teaching basic computer science to summer camp students through his presentation Computers: One Byte at a Time. CSO has given presentations in variety of elementary and middle schools, retirement homes, libraries, the SC State Museum, and many other venues. CSO members are largely comprised of SC Honors College students from a variety of STEM disciplines.


The CSO Lecture Series

CSO is also dedicated to bringing the best of science communicators to South Carolina. In 2012 we hosted Dr. Arthur Benjamin, a mathematician from Harvey Mudd College to perform his TED featured show Mathemagics and a competitive backgammon workshop. Dr. Benjamin is a well known professor who has produced numerous works for The Great Courses series such as The Joy of Mathematics. In 2013, we hosted Dr. Alan Nathan from the University of Illinois. Dr. Nathan is one of the world's foremost experts on the physics of baseball and has served on advisory committees in the NCAA and MLB.

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Current Partnerships

  • New Providence Elementary
  • St. Peter's Catholic School
  • South Carolina State Museum
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