Students at Patterson High School and Baltimore Polytechnic Institute are about to get new science and environmental health laboratories: their schools.
A Community Research Grant from Johns Hopkins will fund our joint effort to provide students with mentors, testing equipment, and funding so they can study and improve their school environments.
Students will work with Keith Madigan, a building engineer, to collect data on environmental conditions which affect their health and learning. Students will monitor several conditions including: temperature, humidity, acoustics, lighting, asthma triggers, and ventilation.
Two public health students from Johns Hopkins, Arshdeep Kaur and Madison Dutson, will introduce students to environmental health research, demonstrate an environmental health study, and mentor students as they develop and conduct their research projects.
I’d love to tell you what research projects they will be undertaking, but I don’t know, yet. The high school students will propose and conduct their own research projects later in the school year. The grant provides students with testing equipment, $4,000 dollars to study and improve their school environments, and $1,000 dollars to communicate their findings.
This student led inquiry and real world problem solving will offer innovative STEM learning opportunities for students. Researchers and educators may learn important lessons from this project as well. Can collaborative scientific research, focused on understanding and solving problems, be an effective tool in improving education, health, and community empowerment?