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iGEM Americas Regionals 2011

To Indianapolis and beyond...

‘Twas a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon when we disembarked in Indianapolis Airport. Along the way to the hotel we observed the actions of our taxi driver and were surprised to learn that texting or talking on the phone while driving was not yet outlawed in Indiana unlike in Alberta. This caused us to reminisce about the old days when driving and texting were the norm back home. We arrived at the hotel and donned our newly printed team Calgary T-shirts and proceeded to head over to the iGEM reception at the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) where we met some familiar faces from the other Alberta teams and then went on to practice our presentation.

Presentation Day

Our group was one of the earliest to present on Sunday morning, preceded only by Team Panama in our particular hall. After receiving mainly promising reviews, we went on to attend the presentations from all the different iGEM teams. We always kept a few team member close to our poster to answer any questions anyone visiting our poster had about the project. Later on in the day our poster sessions our discussions with judges also seemed promising as we received both praise and suggestions for our project and our wiki. The night was concluded with the scheduled activities including Fun Food, Games, and other activities. Though some of the members had to call it a day early and study for the numerous exams they had the week they got back.

Awards Day

Never did we expect that we would receive not one, but two awards. Team Calgary received the awards for best wiki and best new measurement system. We also received a gold medal and made it to the finals. The finalists for the regionals competition were teams Washington, Lethbridge, Brown-Stanford, and Yale. After all the finalists gave their presentations again, Washington was declared the Americas Regionals winner. While some of the members left immediately afterwards to catch their return flight, those who stayed behind enjoyed grabbing a bite to eat at TGI Fridays and left early the next day.