Celeste Tremel is our March 2019 Volunteer of the Month. Celeste holds degrees in microbiology and human genetics and is passionate about teaching science to young people. Continue reading to learn more about her work at MiSci.
I love teaching kids, especially about science and math and showing them how useful that knowledge can be. This led to me reaching out to MiSci to volunteer. I am an unabashed science geek, and constantly look for opportunities to bring aspects of science, math and new knowledge into my daily life and the lives of others. As a former research scientist, and more recently substitute teacher, the Michigan Science Center’s mission dovetails nicely with my passion for science and teaching, and I find it hard to leave whenever I come in to help.
I love the one-on-one interaction I have as a docent, with both kids and adults. It allows me to spark their curiosity and helps them increase their confidence in asking questions and answering them too. Working with large school groups allows me to also capture the attention of a few kids at once, sharing a concept with them and encouraging them to discover where that concept leads. Being able to assist MiSci’s outreach efforts during the Quicken Loans Winter Blast gave me new ideas on how to interact with somewhat hesitant older kids, and help them to try something new.
I am by nature a curious person. Although where I grew up (Pontiac) did not afford me many opportunities to explore this curiosity, I took advantage of whatever came along. After moving to Oak Park and graduating, I attended the University of Michigan-Dearborn and earned a B.S. in Microbiology, working my way through school as a Chemistry Lab assistant. After graduation, I did lab research and was published. I then earned an M.S. in Human Genetics from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. I did research in a few areas as part of my program, focusing on cancers of various types, heart disease, and Huntington’s chorea. I returned to the field of microbiology after graduation, and worked at the National Sanitation Foundation as an Environmental Microbiologist.
I left the paying field of science and moved to the volunteer field once I started a family. Frequent trips to the former Detroit Science Center and other museums were a mainstay. I volunteered at both of my sons’ schools, running a weekly science club, a yearly science fair, creating short chemistry apprenticeships, and serving as a LEGO robotics coach. I also volunteer taught writing, nutrition, and exercise science. I am currently a marathon runner and study the science of distance running.
Discovering ways to demonstrate science concepts and boundless curiosity for most subjects is “my thing.” I only hope that I am giving back to MiSci as much as I receive from it. I have volunteered for other organizations, and feel volunteering for MiSci is the most personally rewarding by far. I look forward to staying involved in any way I can.