Celebrate the Bay Area’s scientific wonders, resources, and opportunities. Explore the role of science, engineering, and technology locally & in the world.

The Bay Area Science Festival is Northern California’s largest education event and brings together STEM role models, families, youth and adults to experience the wonder of science.

Going into our 11th year, the Science & Health Education Partnership at  UCSF is pleased to organize the Bay Area Science Festival. In collaboration with Bay Area universities, museums, cultural institutions, libraries, corporations, after-school groups, research labs and government agencies.

The Festival is designed to engage attention, inspire interest, and ignite imagination across our community. Now more than ever, it’s a way for people of all ages to connect with science and discover the infinite ways it shapes our daily lives and our future.

The Festival seeks to:

  • Raise awareness of science in everyday life.
  • Engage young people in the fun, excite­ment and awe of science to inspire them to careers in science, technology, and engineering.
  • Encourage partnership and collaboration between the STEM community and the public..
  • Increase dialogue about STEM and its place in our quickly-changing world.
  • Enlighten science-lovers around the globe about the Bay Area’s vast STEM resources and positive impact on people’s lives..


In 2020 the Festival offered 125+ virtual events and experiences for all ages and backgrounds. Below is a sample of the kinds of events offered. In 2022, we expect to return to in-person events and look forward to seeing you at Discovery Days!

Virtual Fun

The 2020 virtual Festival featured hands-on virtual experiences for children, teens, families and grown ups — many of which can only be experienced during the festival! Incredible events were created by the Bay Area’s diverse science, technology, engineering, and mathematics community, with activities led by companies, universities, museums, school groups, community-based organizations, and libraries.

Some of the events included the Science of Pulling Noodles, Oakland Zoo Scav-venture Hunt, and a Bee Colorful Poster Contest. Another event brought together Bay Area residents by radio and live streaming internet audio to collectively view the setting Moon, planets and star clusters.

The Bay Area Science Festival also offered events specifically geared toward teens, including an online coding Dojo, a hands-on biological phenomena session, and forum on women in STEM. These activities were designed to engage and connect young people with role models and peers over the world-changing potential – and fun! – of science.

Explorer Tours

Each year, we host behind-the-scenes tours that highlight the scientific wonders of the Bay Area. In 2020, we brought this community favorite to you virtually. Tours highlighted local resources and were led by someone who works in STEM or health fields. Get a behind the scenes look at UCSF’s Makers Lab, UC Berkeley formula race car lab and the Dept. of Energy’s Bay Area SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and ChanZuckerberg Biohub’s COVID-19 testing facility, to name a few!

Panels, Discussions, and More!

Our 2020 festival included thought-provoking discussions, research presentations, and film screenings, all of which could be viewed from home. Participants heard from and interacted with STEM role models, researchers, UCSF grad students, scientists, and thought leaders around critical issues such as Climate Change, Diversity in STEM, and COVID-19.

About the Science & Health Education Partnership

The UCSF Science & Health Education Partnership (SEP) fosters interest in science, builds scientific literacy, and advances diversity and inclusivity in science by connecting the scientific community and the public.

About UC San Francisco

UCSF is the nation’s leading university exclusively focused on health. Now celebrating the 150th anniversary of its founding as a medical college, UCSF is driven by the idea that when the best research, the best education and the best patient care converge, great breakthroughs are achieved.

The birthplace of biotechnology, UCSF’s faculty includes five Nobel laureates who have made seminal contributions to advancing the understanding of cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, aging and stem cell research. All four UCSF professional schools  — Dentistry, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy — as well as virtually all UCSF graduate programs, UCSF Medical Center and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco, consistently rank among the best in the nation, according to the latest surveys by US News & World Report. The graduate-level university also leads the nation in biomedical research and is the top public recipient of highly competitive research funding from the National Institutes of Health. Together, this research, education and patient care contribute to UCSF’s public mission of advancing health worldwide.