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Healthiest Maryland Schools

About Us

The Healthiest Maryland Schools, funded by the Maryland Community Health Resources Commission since 2014, aims to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity by implementing evidence-based interventions within elementary schools, working directly with parents and caregivers, and training medical staff at the Pediatrics at Midtown Primary Care Clinic.

The flagship component of HMS is its after-school programming. HMS After-school programming targets low-income, urban children living in West Baltimore City and focuses on increasing opportunities for Healthy Eating and Active Living among children in Kindergarten – 5th grade. Programming is delivered by inter-disciplinary teams of UMB students from multiple professional schools (Medicine, Nursing, Dentistry, etc.) and the graduate school, referred to as “Health Leaders.” Health Leaders deliver two evidence-based interventions (Coordinated Approach to Child Health and Hip Hop to Health) to children enrolled in after-school programs in six West Baltimore City elementary schools. Each lesson includes health/nutrition education, physical activity, and a healthy snack prepared by the children. The Healthiest Maryland Schools Program also supports the families, children, and communities by offering family health and fitness nights, health fairs, and other healthy eating/active living opportunities at the schools.

Objectives

- Evaluate the impact of a multilevel intervention, combining evidence-based obesity prevention programs involving primary care, the school environment, and family involvement on Healthy Eating Active Living opportunities and knowledge among low-income, urban, predominantly African American children in kindergarten – 5th grade in West Baltimore schools

-  Evaluate the impact of an inter-professional education model on professional and graduate students’ understanding of collaborative approaches to solve health issues, and self-efficacy to creatively teach nutrition education and physical activity to children from urban resource-limited environments


Project Coordinator

Salma Sharaf
Project Coordinator
University of Maryland, School of Medicine

Principal Investigator

The Team

Erin Hager, Ph. D
Principal Investigator

University of Maryland, School of Medicine

Rebecca Carter, MD
Co-Investigator
University of Maryland, School of Medicine


Volunteer & Internship Opportunities

Why Volunteer

Reasons to Volunteer or Intern:

  • Be involved in cutting edge research
  • Strengthen your resume
  • Publication opportunities
  • Improve your interpersonal skills
  • Gain an understanding of how to conduct community research
  • Potentially earn credits for school
  • It's fun!

Volunteer Duties

The types of duties an internship might entail:

  • Recruiting participants
  • Scheduling interviews, making appointments, and contacting participants
  • Helping facilitate parent groups on topics pertaining to nutrition, physical activity, parenting skills, and child safety
  • Conducting participant interviews
  • Classroom set up
  • Collecting data
  • Filing and other office duties
  • Data entry and analysis

Apply

If you'd like to apply for an internship or volunteer position, please email Salma Sharaf.

If interested internship positions, please send resume or CV to:   

Salma Sharaf
Healthiest Maryland Schools, Project Coordinator
University of Maryland, School of Medicine
Department of Pediatrics
737 West Lombard Street
Baltimore, MD 21201