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Outreach events at Central Michigan University

Date of the event: February 24, 2023

Event name: Brain Bee

University organizing the event: Central Michigan University

People organizing the event: Drs Dunbar, Rossignol, Sandstrom

Outreach audience: Middle school and high school students from Michigan

Attendance: 25-30 students

Description: The brain bee event was conducted at CMU. The students had a lab tour of different neuroscience labs at CMU, and they were given opportunities to talk to the grad students, post-docs, and faculty members about graduate school and, eventually, career options in the future. Following lab tours, the students were involved in written and oral brain bee competitions.  The winner of the CMU Brain Bee was sent to the National Brain Be competition.


Event name: Career Fair at Renaissance Academy

School organizing the event: Renaissance Academy

People organizing the event: Renaissance Academy

Outreach audience: middle school and high school students, Renaissance Academy

Attendance: more than 100 students

Description: The event was to provide awareness and encourage students to understand neuroscience and neuroscience-based careers. About 120 students attended this event. We talked to students about brain disorders and brain injuries and how preclinical research can help understand brain pathology and find potential treatments. We also briefly talked about different career options following obtaining a professional degree in neuroscience.


University organizing the event: Central Michigan University

People organizing the event: Michigan Area Health Education Centre

Outreach audience: middle school and high school students from Michigan Area

Attendance: 30 students and teachers

Description of the event: The students had a lab tour of different neuroscience labs at CMU. They were given demonstrations of basic techniques such as DNA extraction, cell culture, rodent brain slicing, and brain tissue imaging. They were all given opportunities to interact with undergraduate, graduate, and medical students and faculty members to learn more about healthcare research and education in preclinical and clinical settings.


Outreach events at Wayne State University

Brain Day in Detroit is an event held for over 20 years in mid-March to correspond with Brain Awareness Week. We partner with the Michigan Science Center, located in Midtown Detroit adjacent to our university. This year, over 1000 members of the general public attended Brain Day, one of the highest attendance days at the center since the pandemic.

Fourteen stations were placed around the center, each presented by a different research group from multiple programs at Wayne State. These stations were staffed with over 100 volunteers, including undergraduate, graduate, and medical students, as well as faculty and post-docs. This broad list of participants helps to underscore the importance of the event in bringing together members of the Detroit neuroscience community for this event. Generally, each research group organizes an activity along the themes of their research. This decentralized approach makes planning much easier as the central coordinator becomes a liaison between the research groups and the very helpful Science Center staff.

Activities included a human brain display, exhibits on brain development and aging, activities focused on drug safety, addiction, head safety, and more! We also had an arts and crafts area specifically for the youngest visitors. We hold this event with very little outside funding. Disposable supplies are donated to the individual activity groups from their home units. We received a donation of “Miracle Berry” tablets for our sensation of taste exhibit from the manufacturer of this product (mBerry). Most of the “take-aways” distributed at the event are generously provided by the DANA Foundation or other research organizations


MiSfN members presenting their research at the Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting in Washington, DC.


Outreach event organized by University of Michigan at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting

Two graduate students (Alika Sulaman and Kate Giffin), along with Dr. Keith Duncan from the University of Michigan, hosted one of the SfN-sponsored socials, "Yes, And," using improv theater games for engagement. Dr Megan Hagenauer from the University of Michigan hosted a social called “The Confound Hour”.


Representation of MiSfN council members at the 53rd Annual Society for Neuroscience Workshop on Chapter Continuity and Leadership Continuity

MiSfN Chapter President Dr Anna Moszczynska, Councilor Dr Julien Rossignol, and Candace Johnson represented the Michigan Chapter at the Workshop on Chapter Continuity and Leadership. Attendees from multiple universities in the US and other countries asked questions about the organization of our Chapter, membership classifications and dues, management of outreach activities, annual Chapter meeting conference organization, and cabinet organization.


MiSfN Annual Meeting 2024


The 2024 MiSfN annual meeting will be held at the University of Michigan. The dates and other details will be posted soon.

The Neuroscience Graduate Program (NGP) at the University of Michigan is outstanding!   It is a university-wide interdisciplinary program with over 170 affiliated faculty from the Medical School, College of Literature Science and Arts, College of Engineering, School of Dentistry, School of Kinesiology, School of Nursing, and School of Public Health who hold appointments in more than 30 departments or institutes. 

As the country's longest standing neuroscience PhD program, the NGP has built an exceptional curriculum over the years.  It combines integrative and interdisciplinary courses, weekly seminars, symposia, and journal clubs intending to dynamically prepare the students for the next steps of their careers. In fact, more than 250 accomplished alumni work in nearly all science-related jobs worldwide, from academic and industrial research to development, innovation, biotechnology, and science policy.

The NGP embraces the complete spectrum of neuroscience training and incorporates the full range of multidisciplinary techniques in a collegial and supportive environment.  This integration across disciplines is only possible due to the highly collaborative research and activities among the NGP faculty, promoting unmatched research experience on multiple levels.   

Another strength of the NGP is its genuinely remarkable body of students.   While diverse (around 60% women and 30% from underrepresented groups), they uniformly excel academically and in research, always focused on understanding the complexity of the nervous system.  The students are the main driving force for many of the NGP extracurricular activities (e.g., annual retreat, Spring symposium, and community outreach), which foster a cohesive neuroscience community on campus.

The NGP’s ultimate goal is to prepare future leaders in the field of neuroscience by providing the training and expertise necessary to succeed in any scientific career the students may choose.

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