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Linda Vista Teen Center

Jena Hales

College of Arts & Sciences

Neurological diseases and disorders affect so many people, yet it can be difficult for people to
find accurate and understandable information. In learning about the biological mechanisms of
different conditions, it is important for students to explore a deep level of understanding, but
also to step back and think about how best to communicate this information to the community
and, in particular, to younger students. This initiative consists of a collaboration between Dr.
Hales’s Clinical Neuroscience course and the Linda Vista Teen Center, which began in Fall
2016 with the assistance of Kevin McGuinn, the site supervisor of the Teen Center. Early in
the course, Dr. Hales and her students bring their excitement for learning about the brain to
the Teen Center in the form of a hands-on experience with sheep brains. Students share their
knowledge about the nervous system and facilitate conversations with the teens about clinical
neuroscience questions. Reflecting on these conversations, the class then works in groups to
develop interactive, engaging presentations and demonstrations addressing some of the teens’
questions regarding neurological conditions. Later in the course, they then return to the Teen
Center to give these presentations and continue conversations about the brain.