MIDDLETOWN — Fifth-graders enrolled in an elementary school’s STEM Academy are eagerly awaiting the results of testing conducted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to see if their do-it-yourself air filter is capable of removing viruses and improving air quality.
Macdonough Elementary School uses project-based learning in its science, technology, engineering and mathematics-focused studies. “My students are curious. They’re problem-solvers. Those are the skills you need in the 21st century,” STEM Academy teacher John Ferrero said.
A student’s grandmother sent an article to his class in September about Corsi-Rosenthal filters, simple-to-make devices using a box fan and furnace filters, which inspired them to try and create their own to determine if they made the classroom “healthier,” he said.
Read More @ The Middletown Press
Last week Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists started testing “Owl Force One,” a low-cost, do-it-yourself “Corsi-Rosenthal” box air purifier that can protect against infectious aerosols, like the virus that causes COVID-19. The testing is taking place at the EPA Homeland Security Division Laboratory’s high-tech, advanced biochamber, UConn Health announced. “We’re here to test ‘Owl Force One’ against MS2. A student from Connecticut has created this box with her classroom of fifth graders.
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After wildfire smoke and the COVID-19 pandemic caused a surge in demand for air purifiers, which can be expensive or out-of-stock, the “Corsi-Rosenthal” box was born.
The simple, inexpensive device is crafted from a box fan, MERV-13 air filters, and duct tape.
Ten-year-old Eniola Shokunbi, who lives in Middletown, Connecticut, had the idea to make the box with her classmates and conduct an experiment to see if better air quality improved student attendance. She reached out to researchers at the University of Connecticut, proposing a collaboration.
“She hand-wrote me a letter and I was so impressed,” said Marina Creed, the university’s Indoor Air Quality Initiative director and an adjunct instructor at the UConn’s School of Medicine.
The students decorated the box and dubbed it “Owl Force One.”
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MORRISVILLE, NC – The University of Connecticut is spending a week at the Environmental Protection Agency campus at the Research Triangle Park to test the efficacy of the Corsi-Rosenthal air filter in reducing Covid particles from the air. From UConn, Marina Creed is leading the all-women group of researchers to test the filter in a controlled setting for the first time.
“We saw that the concentrations of particles were reduced quickly in the chamber, and we’re looking forward to getting the microbiology results that will be out in the coming weeks,” said Creed.
Creed’s formally trained as a nurse practitioner, and she says that it’s her experience working during the coronavirus pandemic that prompted her into action. She formed the multi-disciplinary Indoor Air Quality Initiative at UConn to test the low-cost, do-it-yourself Corsi-Rosenthal air filters. Team members Dr. Kristina Wagstrom and Dr. Misti Levy Zamora joined Creed to work with the EPA lab for the week.
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Story originally published on UConn Today
Several UConn faculty, staff, and students are being honored for their work benefitting citizens and communities as recipients of the annual Provost’s Awards for Excellence in Community Engaged Scholarship.
The awards recognize scholarly activities led by members of the UConn community that are in collaboration with local, regional/state, national, or global communities to create conditions for the public good, culminating in sustainable change and dissemination of these activities. These activities integrate community service with research, creative work, and teaching.
The awardees for 2022 are as follows:
Staff, Emerging: Marina Creed
Marina A. Creed is a Family Nurse Practitioner at the Multiple Sclerosis Center within the Department of Neurology at UConn Health. Creed was nominated for her cross-campus UConn Indoor Air Quality Initiative efforts to protect her patients and surrounding communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, including spearheading an interventional public health initiative spanning UConn Health and UConn’s Schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Engineering. The initiative’s goal is to improve indoor air quality in the community and reduce the transmission of COVID-19. Creed became the integral force behind getting 400 “Corsi-Rosenthal Boxes” into public school districts and vulnerable community locations. These low-cost, do-it-yourself air purifiers have been used in other places around the country but are just emerging to reduce indoor air contaminants, including SARS-CoV-2 viral particles, in situations in which more expensive changes to ventilation are either impossible or will take years to implement. Hundreds of these air purifiers have also been built and donated to Coventry, Hartford, and West Hartford Public Schools, as well as to local homeless shelters, medical clinics, and public libraries. Her efforts have helped many schools become safer and she is working with team behind the initiative to quantify the intervention’s impact on air quality in the pilot school districts, and build a public-facing website to teach communities how to build the unit through a STEM lesson plan for K-12 schools.