Upper School students in Bridget Lesinski and Leslie Webster’s Community Research and Medicine (CRM) Club recently presented a Morning Ex to share their current accomplishments and goals for the year with the school community.
Student presenters explained how the words in the club’s name relate to the work they have been doing. They want to engage various communities they work with to learn more about the health conditions that exist where they live, learn or grow. They used research to develop and test interventions to help those communities learn more based on the support and guidance from research advisors from Northwestern Medicine.
To demonstrate how epidemiologists collect data, the club members conducted research at Nicholson STEM Academy, a CPS school in Englewood. Students interviewed Nicholson community members to determine the prevalent health conditions in their community, generating quantitative data that revealed a 70 percent prevalence of obesity and a significant number of people affected by asthma.
As a club, students in CRM divide into groups based on a particular health condition that affects students in the Parker community. In this Morning Ex, students shared some of the work they have engaged in on food allergies, asthma, diabetes, obesity and anxiety. Each group had designed a specific intervention for their health condition.
One student group that wanted to raise awareness about diabetes and obesity on campus created engaging artwork to display on napkin holders in the cafeteria encouraging healthy eating habits and awareness of one’s BMI (body mass index). Another student group, which focused on increasing awareness of the amount of stress in the Upper School, shared results from a longitudinal survey of students and offered some long-term, short-term and immediate tips for stress reduction. A group focusing on asthma produced an original informational film to educate students about inhaler use and having an action plan when interacting with those who may have asthma.
The student presenters fielded a range of questions from students and adults in attendance, and everyone left with a better appreciation for how we can collect public health data and put interventions in place that will increase awareness and wellness.