Aerial view of campus with Williamsport, the Susquehanna River and Bald Eagle Mountain as a backdrop

Lycoming College biology professor hosts area gifted elementary students

Lycoming College biology professor hosts area gifted elementary students

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Fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade gifted students from Central Elementary and Rommelt elementary schools in South Williamsport visited Lycoming College Tuesday, Oct. 8, to learn about marine biology from biology professor Mel Zimmerman, Ph.D.

The visit was arranged by Lou Ann Zeigler, Central Elementary school counselor and gifted support teacher, who has previously worked in Lycoming’s admissions office.

“Dr. Zimmerman has a wealth of knowledge and effortlessly shares information in an interesting way,” Zeigler said. “He uses hands-on learning to keep students actively engaged. Having the experience of visiting Lycoming engaged students in a unique way that is beyond independent research.”

Students studied the salt-water aquarium, tried on a scuba diving gear, learned about hellbenders, horseshoe crabs and other sea life, and also watched an underwater scuba diving video. The footage was taken during Zimmerman’s 2012 May term trip with his Tropical Marine Biology students to the Roatan Institute for Marine Science on Roatan Island in Honduras.

This class trip to Lycoming was not the first for Zeigler, who brought students to visit Richard Erickson, Ph.D., associate astronomy professor, in the Detwiler Planetarium several years ago.

Lycoming College is a four-year, residential liberal arts and sciences school dedicated to the undergraduate education of 1,400 students. Its rigorous academic program, vibrant residential community and supportive faculty foster successful student outcomes. Lycoming offers 36 academic majors and is recognized as a Tier 1 institution by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1812 and located near the banks of the Susquehanna River in Williamsport, Pa., Lycoming is one of the 50 oldest colleges in the nation. For more information, visit