Music. Medical training. Mental health services. U-M students and alumni deliver precious resources to young people across the state, leading by example and opening doors to the University. Learn more at Stories of our State. (All images by Michigan Photography.)
Doctors of Tomorrow
Through the Doctors of Tomorrow program, Detroit Cass Tech High School students are paired with a Michigan Medicine mentor to learn CPR, automatic defibrillation, laparoscopic surgical skills, the basic elements of surgery, and other clinical skills. “This program was born [in 2012] out of an observation that there weren’t a lot of people of color in the medical school amongst medical students or practicing physicians at the University of Michigan,” says program founder Jonathan Finks, a U-M surgeon and associate professor. “After doing some research, we realized that this was a national problem.” Read more.
Milestone in movement
From Hartland to Sturgis, Grand Rapids to Gaylord, children born with Down syndrome are walking three to six months earlier, thanks to University of Michigan research. Typically walking for children with Down syndrome is delayed until 24-28 months of age, roughly a year later than children without the syndrome. But a team from U-M’s School of Kinesiology discovered that several minutes a day on a custom, miniature treadmill would speed up the time to walking by three to five months. Read more.
Organized by the Center for Educational Outreach, Wolverine Express trips take faculty, staff, students, and alumni to under-resourced high schools across the state to promote higher education by sharing their academic and career journeys. Although visits are tailored around schools’ needs, each trip includes sessions where U-M community members give presentations and engage in discussions with students in classrooms. Read more.
In May 2019, community members gathered to celebrate a year of “making” at the Brightmoor Maker Space. The Brightmoor Makers were on-site pulling screen-printed posters, selling original screen-printed and heat-press apparel, assembling DIY basketball hoops, and showcasing their custom-built trikes. The outcome of a long-running partnership between Detroit Community Schools, the Sunbridge International Collaborative, and the Penney W. Stamps School of Art & Design, the makerspace is the brainchild of Stamps professor Nick Tobier and Bart Eddy, co-founder of DCS and Sunbridge International. Read more.
Music and medicine
For 8-year-old Everlyse “Evie” Hurst, who was born without eyes and has always feared doctors and hospitals, even simple medical appointments were terrifying. But everything changed when C.S. Mott music therapist Emma Wymer played her guitar. Recognizing Evie’s anxiety, Wymer used music to help decrease Evie’s fears. The second grader recently was featured in a video to raise awareness for music therapy and Sophie’s Place, an in-hospital music therapy studio that will open at Mott next year. Read more.
Fighting childhood obesity
InPACT (Interrupting Prolonged sitting with ACTivity), incorporates five bursts of moderate-to-high-intensity exercise into a student’s class day, for a total of 20 minutes. The program is led by Rebecca Hasson, U-M associate professor of kinesiology and nutritional sciences, and was developed with the U-M schools of public health, education, and architecture and urban planning, and Project Healthy Schools. Read more.
Tackling anxiety, depression in teens
The U-M Program TRAILS (Transforming Research into Action to Improve the Lives of Students) works with schools across Michigan to provide effective mental health resources to youth impacted by depression and anxiety. TRAILS is offered in 145 schools across the state. The program provides clinical training to school mental health staff on cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness, then pairs each school with a local, community-based mental health provider who has been trained as a TRAILS coach. Read more.
Strike up the band
Alan Posner, BA ’08, is the director of bands at Bloomfield Hills High School. He took over in 2015 when his mentor, Bob Ambrose, MM ’82, retired after the 2014-15 school year. More than 400 U-M alumni are now at the helm of hundreds of elementary, middle, and high school music classrooms across the state of Michigan. Read more.
Making Michigan Libraries
This project pairs rural librarians with U-M’s School of Information, taking libraries and making them into places to create, get active, connect with the community, and learn in different ways. There are costume creation labs, hack-a-toy events, smartphone photography workshops, and a range of makerspace and STEM-based projects that bring benefits to local residents of all ages. This image was taken at the Niles, Mich., District Library Read more.