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Updates from the Community Engagement Core

Toledoans For Safe Drinking Water / Facebook

Environmental summer camps prepare next generation of activists, youth-centered opportunities for skill building, advocacy, and environmental and social justice were features of the Community Engagement Core’s (CEC) July 22, 2020 Stakeholder Advisory Board (SAB) meeting.

Representatives from We the People of Detroit, Alliance for the Great Lakes, and Freshwater Future presented on the Great Lakes People of Color Water Camp, a space in which youth of color from the Great Lakes area are able to organize and learn together. Recognizing that water is a site of historical and current trauma for many communities of color (e.g., Flint water crisis), the Great Lakes People of Color Water Camp encourages its participants to explore the intersection of environmental justice and social justice. Using the camp’s principles of Listen, Plan, Act, the youth are trained in water testing, identifying heat zones, measuring toxin levels, and mitigation strategies. Building on these skills, they also use art, music, and culture as ways to reclaim the narrative surrounding water and water systems to help move communities from trauma to transformation. They also shared this powerful video Be Water.

The second presentation, featuring Professor Natalie Sampson and student-participant Zeina Reda of the University of Michigan-Dearborn, showcased the Environmental Health Research to Action (EHRA) Youth Academy. Since 2018, the EHRA Youth Academy has invited academics, community partners, researchers, and decision makers to participate in interactive sessions with youth, many from Southeast Detroit and Dearborn. To mitigate and improve the history of poor air quality in Southeast Detroit and Dearborn, participants are trained in activities including risk communication, policy advocacy, power mapping, and air quality measurement with handheld monitors. At the end of their fellowship, youth participants present what they have learned about air pollution, environmental justice, and other complex environmental issues to local and state decision makers, schools, and community organizations.

To learn more about these environmental justice programs and opportunities to engage with them, visit We The People of Detroit and EHRA. For questions regarding the Community Engagement Core please contact Project Manager, Alison Walding

Written by Shanea Condon, CEC Research Assistant and a dual degree MPH/MURP student in the School of Public Health (HBHE) and the Taubman College of Architecture & Urban Planning.
          09/08/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - Zoom TBA   
Learn more about services available from the
Biorepository & Integrated Health Sciences Core 
Daniel S. McConnell, PhD
Associate Research Scientist, Epidemiology
IHSC Leadership
More information contact: Meredith McGehee,

         10/06/2020- 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM - Zoom TBA    
Ted Zellers, PhD
Professor, Environmental Health Sciences
Professor, Chemistry
More information contact: Meredith McGehee,

           10/07/2020 - 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM - Register for Zoom
A Virtual Event: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances
(PFAS): Exposure, Toxicity, and Policy

Register here to receive more information as it becomes available 
         10/19/20 - 10/23/2020 - 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM Daily - Zoom TBA
Environmental Statistics Week
Speakers to include: 
10/20 Xihong Lin, PhD 
Professor of Biostatistics, 
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

10/21 Emily Somers, PhD, Sc.M.
Associate Professor, Rheumatology, Environmental Health Sciences, Obstetrics & Gynecology
10/23 Peter Song, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics

More information contact: Meredith McGehee,
NIH names Rick Woychik director of the NIEHS
National Institutes of Health Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., has appointed Richard (Rick) P. Woychik, Ph.D., as director of NIH’s National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. Dr. Woychik served as acting director of the NIEHS since October 2019 and officially began his new role as the NIEHS director on June 7, 2020. 

NIEHS announcement is here,
M-LEEaD Pilot Project Awardees Dr. Alexis Handal and Dr. Lisbeth Iglesias-Rios discuss the Michigan Farmworker Project on a podcast and with the Michigan Public Heath News Center.

Learn more about the findings from their Michigan Farmworker Project, a 2019 community-engaged qualitative study with migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the state of Michigan in a Q&A from the Michigan Public Heath News Center,

Listen to their discussion about the project on a podcast about migrant and seasonal farm workers and the individuals who work on their behalf. A Passion to Serve,

To learn more about the The Michigan Farmworker Project,
An NIEHS Paper of the Month
"High PFAS levels tied to earlier menopause" was featured as a NIEHS August Paper of the Month. Find it listed here:

Citation: Ding N, Harlow SD, Randolph JF, Calafat AM, Mukherjee B, Batterman S, Gold EB, Park SK. 2020. Associations of perfluoroalkyl substances with incident natural menopause: the study of women's health across the nation. J Clin Endocrinol Metab; doi: 10.1210/clinem/dgaa303 [Online 3 June 2020].
NC State University Postdoctoral Fellowship
An NIH-funded postdoctoral fellowship is available as early as September, 2020 in the laboratory of Dr. Heather Patisaul for work related to endocrine disruption, brain development, placental function, and social behavior. Specifically, this project will use rats and prairie voles to establish the degree to which developmental exposure to persistent pollutants affect the development and function of neuroendocrine pathways related to social behavior and forebrain development. The Patisaul lab is housed in the department of Biological Sciences and the Center for Human Health and the Environment (CHHE) at NC State University. They use a variety of models and tools in our research including RNAseq, immunohistochemistry, confocal microscopy, and behavioral testing. Their primary area of focus is endocrine disruption of the developing brain and placenta.

If you are interested please apply here,
Are you writing a career development or R01 grant? Register now for this mock study section, which will help you understand how NIH grant reviewers think.

This event is ideal for fellows and early career faculty who are writing career development and R01 grants. It simulates an NIH study section in every detail (including the work expected). Participants will be assigned a grant to review in either clinical and translational research or health services research.

Learning objectives:

- To review and critique the quality of a scientific grant application in a formal review meeting
- To apply the guidelines for peer review as developed by the NIH
- To discuss the common weaknesses of scientific grant proposals 

Register by Wednesday, September 30.

Learn more or register here,
REGISTRATION OPEN: "PFAS in Our World" Conference
Register here for the virtual conference

When: October 13-14, 2020

This conference is organized by STEEP SRP at the University of Rhode Island. This trainee organized conference will focus on environmental policy, environmental and human health risk assessment, and environmental justice. A particular emphasis will be how the next generation of scientists can rise to meet the PFAS crisis. The intended audience is NIEHS Superfund trainees, graduate students, and early-career scientists, but anyone interested in the intersection of science, technology, environmental justice, and social equity with the impacts of PFAS is encouraged to attend. Poster abstracts due by September 14th. 

The conference will be followed by a free workshop on October 15-16 hosted by Green Science Policy Institute.   
Recent Publications citing M-LEEaD:

Schulz AJ, Omari A, Ward M, Mentz GB, Demajo R, Sampson N, Israel BA, Reyes AG, Wilkins D. Independent and joint contributions of economic, social and physical environmental characteristics to mortality in the Detroit Metropolitan Area: A study of cumulative effects and pathways. Health Place. 2020 Jul 29;65:102391. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2020.102391. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 32738606; NIHMSID:NIHMS1617056.

Yepes JF, McCormick-Norris J, Vinson LA, Eckert GJ, Hu H, Wu Y, Jansen EC, Peterson KE, Téllez-Rojo MM, Mier EAM. Blood levels of lead and dental caries in permanent teeth. J Public Health Dent. 2020 Jul 30;. doi: 10.1111/jphd.12384. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 32729942.

Campbell KA, Colacino JA, Park SK, Bakulski KM. Cell Types in Environmental Epigenetic Studies: Biological and Epidemiological Frameworks [published online ahead of print, 2020 Aug 13]. Curr Environ Health Rep. 2020;10.1007/s40572-020-00287-0. doi:10.1007/s40572-020-00287-0 PMID: 32794033

Neitzel RL, Sayler SK, Demond AH, d'Arcy H, Garabrant DH, Franzblau A. Measurement of asbestos emissions associated with demolition of abandoned residential dwellings. Sci Total Environ. 2020 Jun 20;722:137891. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.137891. Epub 2020 Mar 21. PubMed PMID: 32208261; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC7261207.

Click here for a PDF with useful information about NIH Public Access Policy regarding citing the center grant.

Per NIH grants policy, all publications, press releases, and other documents relevant to research funded by the center must include a specific acknowledgement of support. For the EHS Core Center, this statement may read:

“Support for this research was provided by grant P30ES017885 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”
Michigan Center on Lifestage Environmental Exposures and Disease (M-LEEaD)

School of Public Health | Copyright © 2020 Regents of the University of Michigan

Support for this center is provided by grant P30ES017885 from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health

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