Warriors in the Community is a radio segment that features short, insightful interviews with key figures from Wayne State University about the many ways in which the university and its programs make a positive impact on the metro area and on the lives of Detroiters.
In our latest episode, we sit down with Carol Miller, Ph.D., a civil and environmental engineering professor in the College of Engineering and the co-director of CLEAR, the Center for Leadership in Environmental Awareness and Research. CLEAR is a National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences center dedicated to understanding and mitigating adverse birth outcomes and serious developmental health problems that have been associated with exposure to volatile organic chemicals, a class of pollutants frequently present below the ground surface, especially in post-industrial cities like Detroit.
Announcer: This is Warriors in the Community, brought to you by Wayne State University. And now, to learn about how Wayne State is positively impacting our communities, here's Darrell Dawsey.
Darrell Dawsey: Today I'm with Carol Miller, Ph. D., a professor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department and co director of the Center for Leadership in Environmental Awareness and Research.
Carol Miller: Hello, happy to be here.
Darrell Dawsey: Can you give us a brief overview of CLEAR and the work that you do?
Carol Miller: CLEAR stands for the Center for Leadership in Environmental Awareness and Research. The center is dedicated to understanding and mitigating adverse birth outcomes and serious developmental health problems that have been associated with exposure to volatile organic chemicals. We are excited that CLEAR will help reduce toxic exposures and improve health outcomes. It will also offer an important training component for doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows. Providing them with an opportunity for hands on field and laboratory research.
Darrell Dawsey: Now, tell us, what is your specific role?
Carol Miller: Well, I have two roles within the center. I am one of the co directors. In addition, I am a co PI on one of the research projects undertaken by the center. That project is focused on development of a predictive model that can be used to understand the vulnerabilities of specific neighborhoods in Detroit to this vapor intrusion threat.
Darrell Dawsey: Now, we know that Detroit has the highest preterm birth rate in the United States. Can you tell us what are some of the key environmental factors that contribute to this problem and how we're addressing?
Carol Miller: Of course, environmental toxins play a key role. Toxins in the subsurface air and water. CLEAR is designed to translate their research findings to the community. And so this has been a real eye opener.
Darrell Dawsey: Well, Carol, thank you and thank CLEAR for all the work you do in our community.
Carol Miller: Thank you very much.
Announcer: This has been Warriors in the Community. For more Wayne State news, please visit us online at today. wayne. edu slash wwj and join us here next Monday at the same time for more Warriors in the Community.