Feature Story: Waterford Scientists in the School
Ireland's oldest city could be well on its way to becoming a birthplace of tomorrow's scientific innovators. That's thanks to a group of Genzyme employees in Waterford and their efforts with our Scientists in the Schools program. These enterprising volunteers are bringing a new outlook on science into the local schools – and potentially creating a new generation of scientists.
Our Waterford manufacturing plant is a prominent local employer, and many students are familiar with the Genzyme name. Our volunteer scientists have helped provide them with an understanding beyond name recognition, raising awareness about what Genzyme does and demonstrating how science and biotechnology fit into everyday life.
These students could be Genzyme employees of the future.”
Through a partnership with Junior Achievement, our employee volunteers give hour-long presentations throughout the school year to students of all ages, focused on career prospects in science. They also train local college science and engineering students on how to motivate and mentor their younger counterparts. But it's the hands-on workshops and interactive discussions led by our scientists that have generated the greatest enthusiasm!
School children have donned coats and goggles to take to the laboratory and play "CSI" in a program on forensic science. In another session, employees shared anonymous stories based on real Genzyme patients close to the students' ages to give relatable examples of how science helps people. Other activities have included visits to local hospitals and Genzyme facilities to experience science in action.
After years of involvement in the local schools, our Waterford employees have learned to develop new and creative ways to reach students – and their success has been evident in the enthusiasm of both the students and their teachers. Equally important to our employees has been the personal gratification they gain from sharing their passion for science, acting as role models, and helping inspire those who may carry their work on into the future.