EDUCATIONAL OUTREACH PROGRAMS
Native American High School Summer Program
Since 2001, The Native American High School Summer Program has been developed in collaboration with participating Native American/ Hawaiian communities with the aim of demystifying higher education, making tenable the goal of attending leading colleges and Universities, and increasing the number of Native American/ Hawaiian students who pursue undergraduate and graduate training in biomedical sciences.
Accompanied by teachers and mentors from their own community, students from Hopi High School (Hopi, Arizona), the Fort Peck Tribes (Montana), the Wampanoag Tribes of Aquinnah and Mashpee (Massachusetts), and Native Hawaii travel to Harvard University for an an intensive three-week introduction to college life.
Students experience what it is like to reside in Harvard dorms, eat in campus cafeterias, catch the University shuttle in time to make morning lecture, and what it means to become responsible for their own learning in a college setting.
The academic curriculum, developed by Harvard Medical School Faculty and Native educators, explores the biological, psychological, and social aspects of substance abuse and addiction. Students attend lectures given by Harvard Medical School faculty, community mentors, and guest speakers. They collaborate in small group conferences to understand assigned readings. And, they work through fictionalized case studies based in students’ home communities in Harvard Faculty lead tutorials. The case format links the biological, psychological, and social content with the students’ home realities.
Participating teachers are provided professional development in the use of case-based learning and in increasing their content knowledge of the relevant sciences.
The Native American High School Summer Program was made possible by a five-year $1.3M Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) from the National Institute of Health (NIH) and gift from Hands on Science, Inc., Rockville, MD.
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