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IMSD Students Visit Cafe College

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Author: Sofia Rios | Category: Around Campus | Community Outreach | July 18, 2018

UT Health has an important role in the San Antonio community to expose younger generations to science. 

This volunteer event was led by members of the Initiative on Maximizing Student Development (IMSD) program. This program aims to increase the number of students from underrepresented groups in biomedical research. The director of the program, Dr. Nicquet Blake attended this volunteering event as well.

The kids were eager to get started on the different activities that were planned for them that day. The first activity allowed them to build a handmade microscope where they were able to use smartphone cameras to look at different slides of insect anatomies, plant components, and tissue samples. Once the slides lit up they observed different microorganisms ranging from different shapes and colors.

Andrea Salinas, a volunteer at this event said, “I totally loved this volunteer experience, once you worked with kids you realize how important is your job and remind yourself the reason why research is so important in the first place. I think also helps you translate science into kid’s language which is a bit challenging.”

For the next activity they were to build a double helix DNA made out of candy. This was the favorite of the day since they were promised to be able to eat it after they were done. After the activity they were left with three foot tall DNA helix’s which left them intrigued.

Cafe College and the IMSD program believe that exposure to science is beneficial to younger generations from underrepresented groups. 

Andrea Salinas explained that it is “especially important for kids to get involved in science in the early stages because it makes them realize how fun and important is science for the world. Also, it teaches kids how science can solve the world’s big problems. Everyone was super enthusiastic to learn more and understand how science involves a lot of talking and listening to others.”

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