Our Experiences

Exploring Viruses: 2009 Workshop

Meet the Participants

Staffing Table Catherine Haorei Moira Rankin Chet Kincaid Gary Hochman Bruce Mitchell Perry Stoner Sora Newman Jared Weissbrot Mike Farrell Adam Wagler Amy Struthers Anna Walburn Deb Brown Belita Kalala John Lowe Matt Smith Leah Carpenter Sara Brostrom Willie Hughes Dr. Georgette Kanmonge Dr. Sue Swindells Dr. Charles Wood Dr. Pete Iwen Dr. Tony Sambol Dr. Keith Hansen Dr. Sharon Medcalf Dr. Steven Tracy Dr. Diana Florescu Dr. Peter Angeletti Andrea Cooney Julie Cusack Sue Durfee Theresa Laux Kris Mazur Maria Jimeno-Buckner Todd LaMense Teresa Bender Frank Tworek LeAnn Stover Marlene LaRue Melissa Hartman Jeff Erixon Janet Raddish LaDeirdre Jackson LeeAnn Vaughan

Student Selection Process

The Omaha Science Media Project students were rising ninth graders in the Omaha Public School System. Nominated by building principals, these students were invited to apply and were interviewed by the OPS Science Curriculum and Learning team. Science was not necessarily these students favorite topic. Rather they were students that had demonstrated a high level of ability in other courses and were interested in exploring new ways to learn science. The students came from seven different middle schools and worked on teams as peers with teachers from across the district.

Omaha Public School Students
















Teacher Selection Process

At a district-wide curriculum day in September 2008, science and journalism teachers from across the Omaha Public Schools district were invited to apply for the Omaha Science Media Project. In addition to personal statements and the support of their principals, this application required 2 recommendations from teachers’ current or former students. The OPS Curriculum and Learning Science leadership team then picked the participants, creating a teacher cohort that represented a broad range of schools, areas of expertise, and teaching experience. A common trait was the enthusiasm for exploring innovative approaches to building deeper connections between students and science.

Omaha Public School Teachers

Andrea Cooney
Sue Durfee
Janet Raddish
Todd LeMense
Kris Mazur
LeeAnn Vaughan

Senior Scientists

Virology and public health researchers from the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and the Nebraska Center for Virology (NCV) opened their labs and shared their experiences with the OSMP teams. The researchers sat for interviews, gave tours of their labs, and worked with the project teams to connect their work with the experiences of young people in the community. In addition to the support of the principal investigators, science advisors joined each team helping them navigate both the science they were studying and the institutions that could help support these media projects.

Dr. Georgette Kanmogne
Dr. Pete Iwen
Dr. Keith Hansen
Dr. Diana Florescu

Science Content Advisors

Catherine Haorei
John Lowe
Belita Kalala

Media Advisors

Professional journalists and journalism educators from NET, Soundprint Media, and the University of Nebraska's College of Journalism and Mass Communications mentored the teachers and students in the Omaha Science Media Project. They provided coaching on the process of moving from topics to stories. They also helped with technical guidance in using cameras, recording devices, and software editing tools.

Michael Farrell
Sora Newman
Amy Struthers
Bruce Mitchell

Special Thanks To

Dan Gilbert

Caroline Crouch

Christina Elf

Judy Diamond

Gary Targoff

Amy Spiegel

David Feingold

Janelle Mullen

Phil Smith

Phil Hammar

Rachel Wise

Kristin Watkins

Ray Meints

Chris Schaben

Scott Barry

David Uttal

Katie Weitz-White

Soo Hui Lee

Benjamin Jee

Christine Lesiak

Becky Aiken

Dee Washington