Tiny Earth Partner Instructors (TEPIs) Angelo Kolokithas (Northeast Wisconsin Technical College), Brian Merkel (UW-Green Bay), David Hunnicutt (St. Norbert College), Lucy Fenzl (College of Menominee Nation), and collaborator Matthew Petersen (Northeast Wisconsin Technical College) recently published an article in Journal of Microbiology and Biology Education. Through community engagement in Tiny Earth in Titletown symposia, these Wisconsin instructors aim to connect community members with science and restore mistrust in the field.
“Increasing student interest and success in STEM education is a top priority for many postsecondary educational institutions. One well-documented approach to both priorities is to have students participate in a Course Undergraduate Research Experience (CURE). Faculty from several technical colleges and universities in Wisconsin teamed up with the Tiny Earth organization to offer a CURE to address the search for new antibiotics. Students enrolled in undergraduate microbiology courses engaged in research and participated in community outreach. To involve the community, faculty from various institutions joined an NFL team, the Green Bay Packers, and created the Tiny Earth in Titletown symposium. Here, students presented their work via scientific posters, to community and industry members, and networked with other scientists from around the region…”