Science Formal is arguably the longest-standing tradition of Queen’s Applied Science. It has become one of the most highly anticipated events at Queen’s and offers invaluable project management, construction, and teamwork experience to the fourth-year engineering students for which the event is planned.
The history of the Science Formal isn’t exact, but it is generally accepted that it dates back to the early 1900s where it began as a simple dance. It was the class of 1923 that first included more ambitious visions such as large structures and waterfalls, and more elaborate themes started in 1927 with the Japanese Gardens. By the 1940’s, the development of major themes for the event was firmly established and the Science Formal was – and still is – a highly anticipated event. Over the past decades, trends have developed where each graduating year attempts to out-do the previous year with more a more elaborate theme, bigger main structures, and more detailed plans.
Fundamentally, the Science Formal is planned and executed each year as follows: the graduating students choose a theme for the event and Grant Hall and select parts of Kingston Hall are decorated according to this theme. The signature piece of the Formal is a huge structure in the centre of Grant Hall that varies year to year, depending on the theme. Recent Formals have celebrated such themes as Sci’07’s Scientia Septem Semper Parvulus (Peter Pan), Sci’08’s Broadway with its own Times Square, Sci’09’s Corruptiornamentumnovern (James Bond) with an airplane and two watch towers filling Grant Hall, Sci’10’s Exordiumeximius, with a large Babylonian pyramid surrounded by the Hanging Gardens, Sci’ 11’s Solemnitasplagiariusterra (Planet Earth) with rooms incorporating the variety of nature offered by the earth, and Sci ‘12s Grandaeurbesorbis (Great Cities of the World).
The Science Formal provides the graduating students with unparalleled undergraduate experience in design, construction, creative thinking, problem solving, leadership, management, and teamwork. It truly is an incredible event, marking the culmination of 4 years of engineering at Queen’s.