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Biology Student Teaches Second Graders About Infectious Diseases

Notre Dame College sophomore biology student Tanesha Reed and Assistant Professor of Biology Dr. Tracey Meilander visited St. Mary’s School in Chardon, Ohio, recently to teach second graders about infectious diseases.

Reed and Dr. Meilander were invited by the Cleveland Clinic Office of Civic Education Initiatives to share with Ms. Donna Henry’s class some basic information about germs, transmission of germs, ways to prevent transmission, hand washing techniques, and careers in microbiology. They even helped students set up an experiment to compare microbial growth between a dirty thumb and a sanitized thumb.

By the end of the presentation, the students were all smiles, giving Reed high fives.

“It was wonderful watching Tanesha shine as she communicated scientific information to the second grade students,” Dr. Meilander said. “She was an exemplary representative of Notre Dame College.”

The St. Mary’s students are participating in the Cleveland Clinic’s Spotlight on Learning program, which “uses the performing arts to engage second-grade students in the study of health and potential career paths in healthcare.” Through interactive classroom presentations, students learn about healthcare professions and healthcare topics from Cleveland Clinic medical experts.

The students then work with local theatre professionals to transform their newfound knowledge into original, health-related plays. The students from St. Mary's will perform their plays at the Weathervane Playhouse on April 26.

For more information about Notre Dame College’s biology program, visit NotreDameCollege.edu/academics/academic-divisions/science-mathematics/biology-dept.