Some of Carolina’s best professors are faculty members in VCR’s centers and institutes. In the past five years, UNC Centers and Institutes faculty researchers have won 43 teaching awards and national designations.
These researchers are currently teaching over 10,000 students at UNC, graduate and undergraduate, and are a vital part of the university’s primary mission. These researchers are also individually mentoring 1,800 graduate and undergraduate students. These students receive an unparalleled opportunity to engage in exciting scientific research and public service that advances their education.
Here are just a few of the ways VCR centers and institutes are helping to educate students at Carolina and beyond:
- The UNC Institute for the Environment (IOE) provides the experiential education component of UNC’s noted Environmental Health Science, Environmental Studies, and Environmental Science degrees. Through faculty-led, on-the-ground experiences at sites spanning all regions of the state, graduates from UNC and fellow UNC system universities join the workforce prepared to help solve the state’s pressing environmental challenges.
- Health Promotion and Disease Prevention’s NAP SACC (Nutrition and Physical Activity Self-Assessment for Child Care) is an evidence-based program for improving the health of young children by emphasizing better nutrition and physical activity in early care and education programs. The program has been widely adopted throughout North Carolina and elsewhere in the United States.
- The computing infrastructure provided by the Data Intensive Cyber Environments (DICE) Center allows students at UNC-CH to build personal digital libraries (LifeTime Library), assemble a 1000-person genome collection (genomics data grid), and enable preservation of scholarly materials (Carolina Digital Repository).
- The Injury Prevention Research Center (IPRC) was instrumental in developing the Gfeller-Waller Concussion Awareness Act to protect the safety of student-athletes in North Carolina. The three major areas of focus in the law include education, emergency action, and return to play following concussion.
- Every year, hundreds of local citizens attend the Nutrition Research Institute’s Appetite for Life Academy, a program that brings the latest nutrition research to life through interactive lectures, demonstrations and events.
- In April 2013, the Institute of Marine Sciences (IMS) held the first annual SciREN (Scientific Research and Education Networking) event, allowing educators from across North Carolina to connect with researchers, learn about the latest developments in marine science, and explore creative ways to share this new knowledge in their classrooms. The initial event attracted 65 teachers from 10 counties and 35 scientists.