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Duke Tip Academic Adventures

Program Sections

Spring courses available now!

The Health Museum, in partnership with the Duke University Talent Identification Program, proudly presents Academic Adventures in the Houston Museum District.  Open to 5th and 6th grade students who have participated in the Duke TIP 4th-6th Grade Talent Search, these day long courses provide challenging, hands-on learning experiences that promote creativity and critical thinking while also allowing students to explore topics not typically covered in school. 

If you have questions contact academicadventures@thehealthmuseum.org


Register Now - 5th-6th Grade

Register Now - 4th Grade

January 18th

Surgeon for a Day

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a surgeon? In this course, you will learn about the different types of surgeons, participate in a fetal pig dissection, and learn about what it's really like to be in the operating room!

Marine Biologist for a Day

Interested in working with real sea life? Probe through oyster shells freshly plucked from Galveston Bay and dissect a dogfish shark! Students will have a chance to explore estuarine life and shark phylogeny, biology, and ecology during this hands-on sea adventure!

Chef for a Day

Dreaming of being a restaurant chef or just love going out to eat? Students will be immersed in a safe, educational, and entertaining world of food and feed their interest in cooking and culinary science! Budding chefs will learn the basics of what makes food taste savory, sweet, or sour and participate in hands-on sensory experiments. Students will hone-in on their knife skills, plating, and teamwork while developing recipes for appetizers, entrees, and desserts. Let's get cooking!

Environmental Engineer for a Day

Ever wonder why it's so important to balance nature and human needs? Students will have a chance to build a simple watershed to learn about the effect of pesticides used in agriculture, invent a holder for cans that's animal safe, and much more while learning the importance of Environmental Engineers in our society! Come find out why engineers are at the forefront of designing renewable energy systems!


February 8th

Cardiologist for a Day

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a cardiologist? Learn more about cardiac anatomy through a hands-on dissection of a sheep's heart.

Veterinarian for a Day

Do you like helping animals and people? Do you think you want to be a veterinarian, or do you want to know what being a vet is all about? Veterinarians are doctors trained to protect the health of both animals and people. As a veterinarian for a day, you will learn about the anatomy and physiology of animals, how to calculate the proper dosage of a drug, and injection techniques. You will also get to experience a little of what a surgery suite would be like by dressing for surgery, learning the different types of surgical instruments used by veterinarians, and some basic suturing patterns. 

Dentist for a Day

What is in your mouth? In this course, you will learn all about your mouth and teeth! You will learn how all about how dentist’s clean teeth, treat cavities and treat diseases of the mouth!

Nutritionist for a Day

Students will whisk and stir their way through hands-on cooking activities including lessons on eating a balanced diet and understanding the importance of micro and macro nutrients. 


March 28th

Genetics and Cancer Researcher for a Day

Interested in cancer research? In this course, you'll learn the basics of genetics research, relationships among DNA, genes, and chromosomes! You will also learn about the effects of different mutations on gene sequences and resulting proteins and how to create a genetics risk assessment! 

Surgeon for a Day

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a surgeon? In this course, you will learn about the different types of surgeons, participate in a fetal pig dissection, and learn about what it's really like to be in the operating room!  

Pediatrician for a Day

Ever wonder how you as a kid are different from adults? Or what your doctor looks for when you go for an appointment? As a pediatrician for a day, you will explore the field of pediatrics, the study of children and childhood diseases. From babies to teenagers, pediatricians take care of young people. 

Epidemiologist for a Day

Have you ever wondered how epidemiologists study outbreaks of infectious diseases and what they can do to help prevent it from spreading?  Are you interested in participating in a challenge in which you and your teammates are tasked to find the antidote to save lives?  Students will have a chance to do this and more while trying to understand what it takes to be an epidemiologist!


April 4th

Neuroscientist for a Day

Despite thousands of years of documented study, the nervous system still holds some of the greatest unanswered questions in science.  How are memories made? How does the brain communicate with the rest of the body? What are dreams and where do they originate within the brain? Around the globe, neuroscientists work together to find answers to these questions, as well as others. In this course, you will learn the basics of brain anatomy through a hands-on dissection, model how the nervous system communicates, and perform memory experiments like those used in neuroscience laboratories.

Pharmacist for a Day

Have you ever wondered what happens before medication is given to a patient?  Pharmacists work behind the scenes in many different practice settings to make sure the right medications are given to the right patients in the safest way possible. 

Petroleum Engineer for a Day

Today's oil and gas industry is designed by chemical, mechanical, civil, petroleum, and electrical engineers using basic math and science principles to result in tremendous economic and environmental advantages in complex projects. We will start with discussing energy consumption, the different sources of energy, and how oil and natural gas are formed. We'll explore how to drill for oil, and the different recovery methods used today including fracking. We will conclude the day with an oil spill simulation – where each of the students will study the different clean-up methods used in industry.

Immunologist for a Day

Did you know every living thing is made up of cells?  White Blood Cells make up your immune system and can’t be seen with your eye! Do you know how important white bloods cells are? What exactly is a white blood cell? Are they good, bad, dead or alive?  In this course, you will take the role of an immunologist and learn to differentiate between several white blood cells and begin to understand the importance of your immune system and its response to several conditions.


April 25th

Mechanical Engineer for a Day

Have you ever wondered about who thinks up the complex machines used in daily life?  Want to learn the concepts used to design machines as small as the sensors in a smart phone or as large as the crawler-transporter which was used to move the space shuttles? In this course, you will be introduced to the field of mechanical engineering and a number of basic engineering concepts which are used to design a wide range of machines. We will explore these concepts through a series of hands-on activities and apply them in design challenges.

Surgeon for a Day

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a surgeon? In this course, you will learn about the different types of surgeons, participate in a fetal pig dissection, and learn about what it's really like to be in the operating room!  

Anesthesiologist for a Day

Ever wonder how people undergo surgery without feeling any pain? Or how they are put to sleep before the surgery? As an anesthesiologist for a day, you will explore the ways that humans are made to doze off so that they can undergo a surgical procedure. This course will include a demonstration of how a rat is put to sleep with anesthesia, and how it wakes up once the anesthesia wears off.

Artificial Intelligence in Medicine




9:15 am - Check in  
9:50 am - Welcome session 
10:00 am - Classes start
4:00 pm - Classes conclude & closing session

Parents and students are welcome and encouraged to attend both welcome and closing sessions in the McGovern Theater at The Health Museum. Parents are not permitted to attend classes.


$160 tuition per course covers the cost of all program material, supplies, and lunch.  The $160 includes a $20 non-refundable registration fee.

Financial Aid : 

Financial Aid applications for Spring 2020 are available. Please send applications to the following email: academicadventures@thehealthmuseum.org 

Registration is online only. Payment is due at the time of registration.

An acceptance packet will be sent electronically 7-10 days prior to your scheduled course.The packet must be completed and submitted by the deadline indicated.  All participants must show proof of health insurance. 

Wait List 

Students are placed in classes on a first- come, first-registered basis. Some classes may fill before the application deadline. For the best choice of classes apply early. A wait list will be generated for classes; however, there is no guarantee that space will become available. Please fill our the wait list form below.

Wait List 2019


Cancellation Policy

Cancellations must be requested in writing to AcademicAdventures@thehealthmuseum.org , ten (10) business days prior to the scheduled program date to ensure a refund (minus $20 registration fee).  After that time, cancellations will result in forfeiture of payment except in case of illness (with doctor's note on letterhead), death of an immediate family member, or inclement weather.  Refunds will take approximately 3 weeks to process.

For questions, contact  academicadventures@thehealthmuseum.org