Missouri State University
Jen Kienstra

Jen Kienstra

The mechanics of the musculoskeletal system have always intrigued Jen Kienstra, a junior exercise and movement science major in the pre-physical therapy program at Missouri State University.

Student shares curiosity with how things work

The mechanics of the musculoskeletal system have always intrigued Jen Kienstra, a
junior exercise and movement science major in the pre-physical therapy program at Missouri State University.

“I have played sports all of my life, which has landed me in physical therapy several times over the years,” said Kienstra. “I loved going to therapy because I got to learn about my muscles and different exercises to strengthen them.”

Recently, she had the opportunity to share that love for and curiosity about the inner workings of objects with approximately 85 second and third graders as the College of Natural and Applied Sciences hosted the Girl Scout Brownie Science Day. Kienstra was one of six Missouri State students who helped to make science fun as the Brownies earned their “Home Scientist” badge.

Along with another student in her introductory physics course, Kienstra led one of the science experiment stations – Making Things Bubble. Each Brownie was given vinegar and baking soda and learned how these two ingredients caused bubbles, or carbon dioxide, to form.

“After part one was completed, we began my absolute favorite experiment: We were going
to make root beer from dry ice,” said Jen. “After the demonstration, we used a large bowl of dry ice and added water, sugar, vanilla and root beer flavoring. The mixture instantly began to bubble and produce more fog. They loved being able to see these things occur as well as being able to smell the root beer scent.”

Kienstra will assist Missouri State students in the fitness center at the Bill R. Foster and Family Recreation Center when it is completed, and she looks forward to an upcoming internship at the Physical Therapy Clinic where she will continue to prepare for her career.

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