High School Students

The Quantum Foundry offers short courses for high school students in grades 9, 10, 11, and 12 during the Fall and Winter Sessions. Each session lasts five weeks and will meet on Saturdays on the UCSB campus or on Zoom during the pandemic. Short courses are designed to be active learning experiences for high school students to engage with the fundamentals of Quantum Foundry related principles and research. The short courses are taught by Foundry Ambassadors in collaboration with faculty.

Foundry Ambassadors, young UCSB scientists, and engineers, are engaged in doctoral research and want to share their enthusiasm for science, and their expertise in quantum research, with high school students. Immediately following the class meetings on Saturdays, Ambassadors and participants will engage in further conversation over lunch or Zoom discussion section..

In addition to the excitement of learning concepts involved in current science and engineering research, high school participants gain access to the university setting and to scientist and engineer role models. The Quantum Foundry also places motivated students from various local and regional schools in direct contact with each other, allowing relationships to develop based on a mutual interest in the sciences.


Please contact Wendy Ibsen if you are interested in attending a session or bringing large groups of students from your campus.


Wendy Ibsen
Education Coordinator

2020-2021 Session Dates

Winter 2021: 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/20, 2/27 (no class 2/13) 1:00-2:15pm via Zoom

Fall 2020: 10/10, 10/17, 10/24, 11/7, and 11/14 (No class 10/31): 1:00 pm - 2:15 pm via Zoom

Winter 2021 Applications

Application Opens: December 18, 2020

Application Due: January 13, 2021

Award Notifications: January 15, 2021


Winter 2021

The Art of Quantum Science

Technologies based on quantum mechanics are everywhere around us, from the computer chips and LEDs in your cell phones to lasers and GPS satellites we use for global communications and navigation. Quantum scientists are also now using the fascinating rules of quantum mechanics to observe, process, and communicate information in entirely new ways that will one day dramatically change how we interact with each other and our surroundings. In this course, we will explore the key concepts from quantum mechanics that are driving this quantum revolution through interactive demonstrations, immersive light, and sound visualization experiences, hands-on design activities, and group games. Students will learn what it means to be a Quantum Mechanic, building intuition about core principles including Schrödinger’s Cat, bits vs. qubits, entanglement, and wave-particle duality. (Keywords: Quantum Mechanics, Quantum Information Science, Quantum Foundry, Physics, Engineering) UCSB NSF Quantum Foundry through Q-AMASE-i program award number DMR-1906325

Taught by: Taught by: Trevor Steiner, a Ph.D. student in Electrical and Computer Engineering and Yin Yu, a Ph.D. student in Media Arts and Technology

Resources created for the course: Art of Quantum Science

Fall 2020

A World of Crystals: How Nature Creates Order from Chaos

When we think of crystals, the thought of a glimmering jewelry display might pop into mind. But a staggering amount of our technology is built on crystals; processors, building materials, lighting, electricity generation... The list is endless. You are surrounded by crystals, in fact, you're probably using a whole array of them to read this. Atom by atom, we can manufacture crystals that nature only dreams of (and now you can too). In this class, we'll explore the physics and chemistry of crystals, learning concepts such as symmetry, diffraction, and diffusion. We will explore how researchers grow materials with applications stretching from medicine, quantum computing, magnetism, and more. We will have a combination of computer exercises, socially-distanced crystal growth (DIY!), and in-class puzzles to help explore the world of crystallography and crystal growth. (Keywords: Chemistry, Materials Science, Quantum Foundry) UCSB NSF Quantum Foundry through Q-AMASE-i program award number DMR-1906325

Taught by: Dr. Brenden Ortiz, Postdoctoral Researcher and Elings Prize Fellow

Engineering Materials: From Magnets to Chocolate (W19)
Engineering Materials: From Magnets to Chocolate (W19)

Winter 2019

Engineering Materials: From Magnets to Chocolate

Engineered materials are everywhere around us, from the metals and concrete that support buildings to the electronics in our phones. Materials scientists and engineers use chemistry, physics, and biology to understand useful materials, from the atomic level to the properties we see, and everything in between. In this course, we will learn how materials scientists manipulate materials at every length scale to make better structural, biological, and electronic, and magnetic materials. In particular, we will focus on research happening at UCSB, from bio-inspired materials design to quantum materials research at the new Quantum Foundry. At the end of this course, we will apply materials design concepts to real-world engineering problems. (Keywords: Materials Science, Quantum Foundry) UCSB NSF Quantum Foundry through Q-AMASE-i program award number DMR-1906325

Taught by Marcela Areyano, a Ph.D. student in Mechanical Engineering, and Julia Zuo Ph.D. student in Materials