7th and 8th Graders to be Scientists for a Day
120 LOS ANGELES-AREA 7th AND 8th GRADERS TO BE SCIENTISTS FOR A DAY AT CEDARS-SINAI MEDICAL CENTER
LOS ANGELES (Feb. 16, 2010) – About 120 students from four area schools will begin to discover if they have what it takes to become brain surgeons or neuroscientists through hands-on experience at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Friday, Feb. 26, 2010.
“Brainworks,” an annual program for seventh- and eighth-grade students sponsored by Cedars-Sinai’s Department of Neurosurgery and Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute, will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Harvey Morse Auditorium. This year’s participants attend Young Oak Kim Academy, a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) school; South Gate Middle School; Audubon Middle School; and Markham Middle School.
The day’s schedule includes science-oriented games and other group activities, presentations by research scientists, and visits to a variety of interactive stations, including:
- A surgical station, with a surgical microscope, 3-D imaging and a phantom skull that gives participants an opportunity to perform virtual surgery.
- A neuropathology station and microscope slides of various types of tumors.
- A vital signs station, where students will have their vital signs taken and learn how these measurements are used in patient treatment.
- A surgical instruments station, with actual instruments used in the operating room.
- Advances in research station, where students can perform DNA, tumor and laser experiments with research scientists. The researchers will share the advances they are making with brain tumor vaccines, immunotherapy for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, and methods of crossing the blood-brain barrier to fight tumors.
- A rehabilitation and healing station, where students will learn how patients feel when undergoing rehabilitation therapy and will have the opportunity to meet the hospital’s canine pet therapists.
- A photo station, where students can have their picture taken with neurosurgeon Keith L. Black, MD,chairman and professor of the Department of Neurosurgery, and director of the Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute.
The keynote address will be given by Dominique Jodry, a research assistant in the Department of Neurosurgery and a former teacher with the Miguel Contreras Learning Center in Los Angeles, and Stephen Johnson, a researcher in the CSMC Graduate Program in Biomedical Sciences and Translational Medicine in the
Department of Neurosurgery laboratories.
Recognizing that some students who have great potential to become neuroscientists, surgeons or physicians simply need to have their interests cultivated, Black established Brainworks in 1998 as an introduction to the excitement and fulfillment offered by careers in science and medicine. He had an early childhood curiosity about life and science, which was encouraged by his parents, both of whom were educators. He published his first research paper at age 17 and has authored hundreds of scientific articles.
Teachers at selected schools choose those who attend Brainworks, based on students’ interests and achievements in science. The Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute and Department of Neurosurgery assume all costs and provide a complimentary lunch.
Health Power Award Cedars-Sinai selected as the only center in California to participate in multi-site study