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University of California-San Diego

Superfund Research Program

Outreach Core

Project Leaders: Hyam L. Leffert, Keith Pezzoli
Grant Number: P42ES010337
Funding Period: 2000 - 2005

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Project Summary (2000-2005)

The Outreach Core's broad, long-term objective is to improve the communication, usefulness, and innovative development of Superfund-related environmental science and toxicant studies in two target areas: education and industry. The focus on education has four aims geared to transfer knowledge about Superfund toxicants and environmental health from UC San Diego's SBRP to several strategically selected high schools. Specifically, the four education aims are to provide and lead curriculum workshops for teachers and students, to develop Educational Outreach Resource Centers, to provide organized laboratory and field research apprenticeships, and to develop discipline, knowledge, communication, leadership, and mentoring skills. Methods to achieve these education aims include teacher workshops to develop curricula and hands-on student exercises including lab and field experience and an organized series of Technology Tours. The approach builds upon several nationally-recognized watershed-based educational initiatives underway at UCSD's Birch Aquarium and Natural Reserve System and at the San Diego's Natural History Museum. UCSD's Charter School and CREATE Program, both of which operate as testbeds to develop innovative approaches to the education of disadvantaged students in grades 9-12, will actively participate in this effort. The Outreach Core's focus on industry has three aims integrated with the education component. First, to build capacity for innovative university/industry networking and collaboration in the creation, integration, and transfer of knowledge about basic biological, chemical, and physical aspects of Superfund toxicants. Second, to cultivate industrial partners for educational and research purposes. And third, to build a Federated Geographic Information System (GIS) useful for linking Superfund-related basic science to water quality and public health issues in the larger San Diego/Tijuana bi-national border region. To meet these industry and education aims, the SBRP's Outreach Core will work closely with the Industrial Environmental Association (IEA), especially the IEA's working committees on Strategic Environmental Management, Hazardous Waste, and Maquiladoras (export-oriented factories in Mexico).

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