I remember one afternoon as I was working with my Little Sib Layla* on her 8th grade homework and we were chatting about life, she told me how both she and her little brother thought health class was so boring. As a premed, I was sad to hear this yet when I thought back to my middle school self, I wasn’t surprised. I asked her how it could be more exciting, and she said that having college students in class would be fun, similar to how she and I spent our afternoons doing math homework together. Layla inspired me to start an organization that brought college students into elementary school classrooms to co-teach health classes, engage kids, and serve as relatable mentors. It’s been almost six years since I first tried to make health lessons fun for kids in the classroom. Fast forward to today and I am so excited to continue making health lessons fun for kids, this time outside the classroom using tech and gamification through First GrAID.
My name is Gwendolyn Lee and I’m the Chief Operating Officer for First GrAID. As an MD/MPP candidate at Harvard Kennedy School and UCLA Medical School, I’ve always wanted to help my patients both in the clinic through direct patient care and outside the clinic through policy and public health. After serving as a Pediatric Injury Prevention Scholar (PIPS) at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, I became increasingly aware of the need to focus efforts outside the clinic and promote preventive care. There are many ways to promote preventive health education, ranging from public health campaigns to health classes in school. After joining Flare Capital Partners, a venture capital firm that invests in digital health, as one of their Scholars, I was inspired and wanted to explore tech-driven solutions. I am thrilled to be a part of the First GrAID team because we work towards that mission of preventive care by implementing innovative solutions through ed tech and gamification.
Now that many of us are staying at home, it’s more important than ever to ensure our kids are safe at home. As families try to combat COVID-19 transmission by disinfecting the home and using cleaning products more frequently, remember to store them properly and keep them out of children’s reach and sight. You can keep them in cabinets that are above out of kids’ reach, make sure that cleaning products’ bottle lids are screwed shut, and teach kids to not consume these products. We can avoid accidental poisonings together!
* name has been changed