Brain Awareness

Initiated in 1996 by the Dana Foundation and the Society for Neuroscience, the Brain Awareness campaign is an international program designed to promote a greater understanding of the brain and its functions, as well as increase public awareness of the benefits and promises of neuroscience research.

The University of Minnesota Medical School, Duluth campus, and the Graduate Program in Neuroscience, based on the Twin Cities campus, have been participating in the Brain Awareness campaign for over 20 years, arranging presentations in elementary schools throughout Greater Minnesota and Wisconsin.

The focus of the Brain Awareness program has been teaching fourth, fifth and sixth-grade school children hands-on activities to promote a greater understanding of the brain and nervous system. A typical presentation involves a real human brain, as well as interactive demonstrations of brain functions. We use a multimedia approach to provide the most interesting and informative program possible. Our volunteers can give these presentations in individual classes or collective groups.

Brain Awareness Outreach

Elementary School Visits

Visits to Schools in Greater Minnesota

Many medical students from the Duluth Campus participate in Brain Awareness to fulfill the community service requirement of their rural preceptorship course. As part of this course, students spend roughly 20 days working with and learning from family medicine physicians who practice in rural communities.

Visits to Duluth Area Schools

Brain Awareness visits take place during the spring months.

Invitations to register are mailed out during the fall semester and contain instructions for logging in to the registration site. We will contact you when we begin scheduling the school visits.

If you have questions regarding Brain Awareness or presentation scheduling, please contact, Dr. Janet Fitzakerley at (218) 726-7012 or