Members of the public can touch a human brain during Brain Awareness Day on Saturday, March 16 at The Leonardo. Brain Awareness Day activities will be presented at the museum free of charge from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the atrium of The Leonardo, 209 E. 500 South in downtown Salt Lake City.

The hands-on activities educate the community about the wonders of the brain and brain health. Activities include touching real human brains donated for educational purposes; looking through a microscope at flies or worms with fluorescent brain cells; learning and memory games; and performing activities while wearing concussion goggles that simulate how sustaining the brain injury impacts vision and coordination.

“I think it’s a great way to educate kids and the community about what’s going on inside their brains and how that influences their perception of the world around them,” said Utah Brain Awareness Week co-chair and U graduate student Christie Wnukowski.

In addition to visiting The Leonardo, volunteers will give presentations to more than 700 elementary and high school-age children in the greater Salt Lake City area from March 11 through 15.

News media are invited to cover any of five presentations at area schools. School presentations are not open to the general public. See the list of dates, times and locations at the end of this news release.

Brain Awareness Week is part of a global campaign and is sponsored locally by the U’s Neuroscience PhD Program and the University of Utah Neuroscience Initiative. Utah programs are run by more than 40 trained volunteers including U students, faculty, and staff.


Monday, March 11

8:15 a.m. – 10:20 a.m. – Rose Park Elementary, 1105 W 1000 N, Salt Lake City, 84116

12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. – Emerson Elementary, 1017 Harrison Ave. S., Salt Lake City, 84105

Wednesday, March 13 

9:00 a.m. – 11:50 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., Neil Armstrong Academy, 5194 Highbury Pkwy, West Valley City, 84120

Thursday, March 14 

9:56 a.m. – 12:17 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. – 3:19 p.m. – Mountain High, 490 S. 500 E., Kaysville, 84037

Friday, March 15 

2:15 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Granger High, 3580 3600 W, West Valley City, 84119

Saturday, March 15 

10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. – The Leonardo, 209 E 500 S, Salt Lake City, 84111

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About the Neuroscience PhD Program at the University of Utah

The Neuroscience Program at the University of Utah is the only interdepartmental program at U of U to offer a PhD. Thesis laboratories are available in over 70 laboratories from 14 participating departments ranging from the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy to the Department of Biomedical Engineering. Lectures from visiting scientists, symposia and retreats at the Snowbird Resort, connect students with research and researchers from around the world. 

About the University of Utah Neuroscience Initiative

The Neuroscience Initiative at University of Utah Health represents a commitment, by the University of Utah and the Senior Vice President for Health Sciences office, to unify basic, translational, and clinical research efforts towards a better understanding of the brain in disease and health. This vision is currently being accomplished by linking clinicians, scientists, and the broader neuroscience community at University of Utah Health. Our neuroscience research community, ranging from neurologists to imaging specialists to molecular biologists (>150 investigators) spans across 7 colleges and schools, 15 centers and institutes, and more than 32 departments.

About The Leonardo – Museum of Creativity and Innovation 

The Leonardo fuses science, technology and art in experiences that inspire creativity and innovation in people of all ages and backgrounds. The Leonardo is proud to encourage community learning and invites you to become a part of its unique community powered museum experience. Located in Salt Lake City, The Leonardo opened in 2011 and is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization.

Media Contacts

Julie Kieferassociate director, science communications, University of Utah Health
Office: 801-587-1293

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