Girls in math, science

Girls throughout Utah who are in middle school, junior high and high school are invited to a conference March 7 that should pique their interest in math and science classes - if not a technical career.

The Expanding Your Horizons in Science and Mathematics Conference is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the campus of Utah Valley State College, Orem.

Women who work in careers based in math and science will present workshops about fields like medicine, chemical engineering, botany, computer science, molecular biology, veterinary medicine and other areas. Cost of the conference is $12, which covers all activities, lunch and a T-shirt.

Last year nearly 450 girls attended the conference, which is sponsored by the UVSC Equity Center and the Brigham Young University Women in Science Center.

The registration deadline is Feb. 28. Students should contact their high school counselors, math and science teachers or the Equity Center at UVSC, (801) 222-8498.

Breast cancer fight

The fight against deadly breast cancer took on new momentum this month, with help from the Salt Lake City-County Health Department and Salt Lake area hospitals. In separate actions:

The health department is giving free gift certificates for dinner for two to low-income women over 40 who take advantage of cancer-screening services during February. The program offers free or low-cost clinical breast exams, pap smears, pelvic exams and mammogram vouchers. For more information call the program at 468-2838.

LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City, Cottonwood Hospital in Murray and Alta View Hospital in Sandy are giving away software to remind women about breast self-examination. The program is user-friendly and easy to install on a personal computer that has Windows 95.

A small flower icon will remind women when it is time for an exam. Clicking on it, women will have access to a menu with help about cancer detection, risk factors, treatment options, a step-by-step guide to self examination and other information. "Self-exams don't take long and really can mean the difference between life and death," said Dr. Brett T. Parkinson, radiologist at LDS Hospital.

To get the program or more information, call LDS Hospital at 321-5316, Cottonwood at 269-2395 or Alta View at 576-2271.

Context for science

Australian science and technology writer Margaret Wertheim will speak about science in a social context at a convocation Thursday at Weber State University.

Her free lecture, titled "God, Physics and the Gender Wars," begins at 10:30 a.m. in the Shepherd Union Ballroom.

Wertheim has spent the past 13 years writing extensively for television, radio and magazines. She is the author of nine television documentaries, including the internationally award-winning science series "Catalyst."

She is currently writing and producing "Faith and Reason," a documentary about the connection between modern-day science and religion.

In addition, she has written two books, including "Beyond 2000," which was the basis for a series of science programs on the Discovery Channel. She is currently at work on a third book about the history of body and soul space in Western culture.