~ Serving the community for a better future ~
~ Increasing understanding and awareness of science ~
~ Making a difference ~
If you would like the GSBS Outreach Program to visit your school/group, coordinate an event, or for more information, please contact Dr. Vicki Knutson, Associate Dean (Victoria.P.Knutson@uth.tmc.edu). Requests made by the community are matched with the expertise and interests of GSBS volunteers.
If you are a GSBS student and would like to receive information about outreach activities, submit your name to one of the outreach coordinators to learn more and be added to our list-serv. You can also “like” GSBS Outreach on our Facebook page.
Thank you from your 2012-2013 Outreach Coordinators!
Sarah Baum (Sarah.H.Baum@uth.tmc.edu)
Matt Wait (John.M.Wait@uth.tmc.edu)
Antonio Tito (Antonio.J.Tito@uth.tmc.edu)
Heather Turner (Heather.N.Turner@uth.tmc.edu)
Tamara Jatoba Laskowski (Tamara.O.Jatoba@uth.tmc.edu)
Overview of the GSBS Outreach Program:
The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Houston has an active outreach program that serves the City of Houston, Harris County, and the State of Texas. The GSBS Outreach Program is a volunteer-driven community service to promote science and science education in the community. The goals of the outreach program are as follows:
Several projects have been undertaken in response to community needs to support science education. GSBS faculty, students, and alumni drive this volunteer-based effort. In the last three years alone, over 150 volunteers have contributed over 700 hours to the community through the GSBS Outreach Program.
GSBS Outreach Program Activities
Elementary School Programs
Outreach program volunteers have established a long-term partnership with two inner city elementary schools that serve disadvantaged communities:
- Brookline Elementary School (reaching over 200 4 th grade students)
- Sylvan Rodriguez, Jr. Elementary School (over 150 5 th grade students)
Teams of graduate students and GSBS alumni visit throughout the year to work with the students and teachers on topics from their science curriculum. Some of the activities provided by our volunteers for these two schools include demonstration of scientific principles, “hands-on” experiments related to curriculum topics, teacher training in science, advice for science projects, and tours of research labs for selected students.
Scientist for a Day
Twelve fourth grade students from Brookline Elementary School, selected by their teachers based on their leadership qualities, come to GSBS to become a “scientist” for a day. The Outreach Program provides an exciting hands-on experience in which students learn about basic science concepts, and the importance of taking notes and keeping records of procedures and results like a true scientist. In years past, activities have included a Life Flight tour, a close look at the MRI machine and MRI pictures, and visiting a lab studying neurology of sea slugs.
GSBS Outreach has created and operates Project Grad’s Biology Academy for 30 local high school students who are at risk for not completing high school but are likely to qualify for AP (advanced placement) Biology. This experience lowers their fears of that course and raises their enthusiasm for biology through course work and laboratory experience.
National Youth Leadership Forum
The GSBS Outreach Program hosts the National Youth Leadership Forum in Medicine to outstanding high school students from across the U.S. that are interested in medical sciences and are curious about biomedical research. Students tour labs and facilities, learn about pursuing a career in biomedical science and talk to GSBS students and faculty who share their experiences about college, graduate school and their career choices.
The Outreach Program hosts a teacher’s workshop for Brookline’s fourth and fifth grade educators. The workshop focuses on inquiry and investigative science in an effort to encourage teachers to use a hands-on approach to teach science and the scientific method to their students.
Other Activities for Elementary, Middle, High School, and College Students
These valuable outreach efforts, many of which reach youth at risk, are conducted entirely with GSBS students, faculty, and alumni who volunteer to help hundreds of children and their teachers by encouraging the development of science instruction at an early age. The GSBS is pleased to share the thrill of scientific discovery and deepen the experience of scientific endeavor for these children and their teachers. This type of outreach program is truly an investment in the future.