Project SCORE: Development of a Permanent Outreach Program Between Teaching Fellows and Science Teachers/Students of the Fort Worth ISD
University of North Texas Health Science Center
At the beginning of the school year, the graduate fellows share information about their research projects with the Fort Worth ISD students they mentor. Fellows are encouraged to incorporate the biotechnology they use in their research into the laboratories and lessons that they prepare, highlighting applications of specific bio-techniques they have learned to everyday life. To encourage this activity, Project SCORE has provided support for the Graduate Student Association (GSA) Science Fair for middle and high school students. With participation doubling over the last two years, and nearly 50 entries anticipated this year, our Fellows will take part in all levels of the science fair program, including organization, judging, mentoring students on their projects, and ordering supplies used to develop these research activities. During the science fair, Fellows will conduct tours of their laboratories, the DNA/Forensics facility, and the anatomy bio-skills educational and research laboratory, and facilitate a question/answer forum regarding current science discoveries and careers. Fellows gain organizational and communication skills and get essential first-hand training in mentoring future science students, much like they expect their graduate faculty mentors to handle their research projects. Our administration and faculty sees the “on the job” interpersonal skills training for our Fellows as a major asset and has elevated this program to a high priority activity for graduate students at the health science center.