This proposal is in response to RFA-ES-06-09, Short Term Educational Experiences for Research (STEER) in the Environmental Health Sciences for Undergraduates and High School Students is being submitted by the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The title of our project is? Connecting Students to Environmental Health Researchers ?.Students in this proposal include both undergraduate and high school students. The central goal of this proposed program for short term educational experiences for research is to connect undergraduate and high school students with investigators involved in environmental health research at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. This research could range from studies at the molecular level up to population- based studies. Secondary goals include: 1) increasing the awareness of these students of the opportunities for research careers in the field of environmental health;2) increasing the number of students aware of these career opportunities by accepting students from different colleges and universities and high schools;and 3) increasing the number of students that apply to undergraduate or graduate programs relevant to environmental health. In addition to their research experience , students will attend a weekly seminar and journal club in environmental health and tour various core facilities. The culminating activity of this summer research experience will be that the students, in conjunction with their mentors, will develop an abstract and poster of their research for a Research Symposium dedicated for this program All faculty, students and staff in the Department will be invited to attend and all attendees will be given a copy of an abstract booklet. As part of our evaluation plan, we will include an exit survey. We are particularly interested in learning what the students? knowledge about environmental health was when they entered the program versus when they ended the program. We will also query about their knowledge of the scientific method, and methods before and after participating .The longer-term goal is to assess whether the students that come through this program enter into undergraduate science programs (in the case of high school students), or science graduate programs (in the case of undergraduates), particularly in an environmental health related discipline.
There is an appreciation that getting high school and undergraduates connected to research may excite students so that they may go on to become research scientists. While there may be an appreciation among our student populations regarding the impact that humankind?s activities has on the environment there is less of an appreciation on the relationship between agents found in the environment and human health. That is exactly the overall goal of this project ?Connecting Students to Environmental Health Researchers?. This proposal is being submitted by the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The Department of Environmental Health Sciences is concerned with the adverse influence of the environment on human health and with controlling these influences. Traditionally, the field of environmental health sciences has focused on hazardous agents in the environment, including biological, chemical, and physical environmental agents. The Department engages in a number of activities within this traditional approach, including studies of the sources and environmental distribution of such agents;human exposure to such agents;the body?s response at the molecular, cellular, organ system, and wholebody levels;environmental risk assessment;and prevention and intervention strategies (including environmental engineering, law, policy, and communications solutions). Students that become part of this program will have the opportunity of working in the laboratories of the scientists conducting original research in these areas . In addition, the students will participate in a weekly seminar and journal club to learn more about environmental health and to analyze and discuss data from other researchers , Finally, the students will present their in a poster format to the faculty and students in the Department. The longer-term goal is of the program is to get students excited so that choose to enter undergraduate science programs (in the case of high school students), or science graduate programs (in the case of undergraduates), particularly in an environmental health related discipline. Hopefully by experiencing the kind of program we are proposing, this will occur.