Genetics finds its way into people’s lives in many different ways – for example, when an ad for an ancestry test pops up on the TV, during a visit to the doctor’s office, when law enforcement asks for a cheek swab, or perhaps when an invitation to participate in a research study comes through. As genetics becomes ever more personal, people are left with many questions. What is on the horizon that might help my family? Should I be concerned about my privacy when sharing genetic information with others? Are there any laws that protect me from discrimination? As people explore these topics, they can find answers to their questions so they feel better equipped to navigate this new world of personal genetics, and can speak up in the societal discussions that are shaping the path forward.
This is why pgEd leads workshops in schools, libraries, museums, youth groups, and community spaces as part of a grassroots effort to engage communities. We encourage individuals and groups to use our materials, which are freely available on-line. Our lesson plans, particularly “Introduction to Personal Genetics”, are easily adapted for general audiences and can provide great conversation starters. And stay tuned – we are working on new digital resources to help spark discussion!
Please reach out to us at pgEd@pged.med.harvard.edu to discuss an event or project where we may be able to share some of our materials or perspectives.