Notre Dame partners with area teachers to promote STEM education

Author: Marissa Gebhard

BioEYES in the Classroom

The University of Notre Dame extended Research Community (NDeRC) will host the fourth annual Collaborating for Education and Research Forum on Saturday (Jan. 22) from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Jordan Hall of Science.

The forum brings together K-12 teachers and administrators, university faculty, graduate students and staff to consider ways to collaborate in building a vibrant science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) community. Through parallel breakout sessions, the forum will acquaint area teachers and parents with the educational outreach and research opportunities available with Notre Dame faculty.

U.S. Rep. Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.) will speak at the family and neighborhood plenary session at 11:30 a.m. During that session, presenters will be speaking on the value of parental involvement in student’s education. Some 150 teachers, parents and school administrators are expected to attend.

NDeRC’s integrated STEM community model focuses on increasing the number and kinds of interactions among engineers and scientists from industry, university and the community; graduate and undergraduate students from across the STEM disciplines; K-12 teachers and students. NDeRC fosters a broad spectrum of opportunities for engagement including RET (Research Experience for Teachers), BioEYES, and numerous other programs.


BioEYES offers a weeklong activity using zebrafish as a model to teach local students the fundamentals of embryonic development and genetics in their own classrooms. During the past academic year alone, the BioEYES program reached out to 35 schools in the Michiana area, involving 50 K-12 teachers in 130 classrooms and serving 3,600 students. These weeklong classroom activities at primary, middle and high schools in the local area will reach 10,000 students by the end of this academic year. The BioEYES program at Notre Dame was co-designed, piloted and led by NDeRC graduate students since its inception. Because of the success of BioEYES, NDeRC has promoted the program as a model for a suite of similar programs with activities in environmental science, nanotechnology, and earth/space science for primary, middle and high school classrooms.

A complete schedule is available here.

Contact: Marissa Gebhard, College of Science,