Public Engagement

  • Getting excited about science!

  • Learning about different types of fish

  • Future scientists in training

  • One of our high school interns providing a tour of the fish facilities

  • Future scientist working at the microscope

  • Crocket High School students present their research at a student symposium

  • Learning about experimental design

  • Students getting excited about hands-on research

  • Proudly sporting our brain caps!

  • Checking out our jello brains on dry ice

Crockett High School Internship 
Our lab has been very active in enhancing science education for students from Crockett High School by organizing a year-long internship program that allows students to receive course credit, extend their knowledge, and develop skills needed to conduct long-term, original research projects. Student interns are trained and supervised by Hofmann lab members while working on a research project – including experimentation, data analysis, and presentation – for two half-days a week throughout the academic year. At the end of each semester, students present their work to an audience for external review, with final presentations on UT campus. 

Crockett is an urban public school in the Austin Independent School District with a diverse student body (60% Hispanic, 25% Anglo, 15% African-American). Most of Crockett’s students receive free or reduced lunch, over half are considered economically disadvantaged, and the vast majority will be first generation college students should they choose to attend. Our partnership with Crockett provides some of its most promising students access to instruction and facilities that would not otherwise be available. Now in its 8th year, 28 students have successfully completed the program and it has become a capstone course for Crockett seniors interested in pursuing careers in STEM fields. Three of the students have co-authored peer-reviewed publications!

Summer 2013 Science Club

The Hofmann lab organized a science outreach program as part of a 4-week summer camp. Ten elementary school kids participated in activities such as extracting DNA from strawberries, dissecting Jello brains, collecting and examining microorganisms, and making fossils. Check out some of the photos of the new generation of scientists!


We introduce elementary classrooms to the biology of brain and behavior, this includes fish observations in a classroom aquarium and field trips to the Hofmann fish facility. We also participate in community engagement events such as Science Under the Stars and Darwin Day.