LaVallo Group Outreach
The Lavallo Lab is strongly committed to community outreach and focuses on providing opportunities for underrepresented students in the local Riverside and Moreno Valley School Districts. We aim to raise interest in STEM subjects with a hands on experience or simply by having a strong involvement with the community to encourage students and enhance their experience with STEM activities.
Previous Outreach Activities:
Every summer, since 2014, the Lavallo Lab has provided a 6 week summer internship for interested students from West Valley High School. This 6 week experience provides the opportunity for students to get involved in a graduate level research laboratory. We focus on laboratory safety protocol and basic laboratory techniques for a typical organic, inorganic, and organometallic chemistry lab. Over the past 2 years 6 of our mentees have graduated and moved on to further pursue their undergraduate degrees. All of which are studying STEM subjects. They are as follows: Wesley Poon - UCR biochemical engineering, Maydelle Lorenzo - Berkeley Chemistry, Ryanne Browers - Cal Poly Pomona Architecture, Hailemariam Teshome - UCLA Chemistry, Jacob Barkley - Berkeley Engineering, Joseph Dickson - UCSD Engineering. Naomi Mustafiz, Kennedy Hill, and John Paul Legaspi will soon be graduating from West Valley High School. We find that typically students are turned away from STEM subjects due to the perceived difficulty or lack of encouragement and our lab also loves to encourage students and enhance their experience in STEM by getting involved in the form of science fair judging annually at Castleview Elementary and Riverside Stem Academy. We’ve also most recently been involved in teaching the Scientific Method to Taft Elementary during National Chemistry Week showing how fun science can be. For those students that are already clearly interested in STEM we like to further enhance their knowledge in the form of teaching high school level chemistry and forensics to students at Riverside Stem Academy in preparation of the California Science Olympiad. We have been volunteering our time since 2013.