Jane Litt, chairperson of the Education Committee, had no information to report.
Treasurer Charles Greenwald reported that at the end of February, the Special Projects Fund covering the summer's Adopt-A-Student program has reached about $18,700. The combined Endowment/Investment Funds total stands at $127,092.44.
Walt Stephens announced that we have $1,000 more than we need to fund the entire Adopt-A-Student program this summer, including the pizza party and the August luncheon. This is wonderful news. He reported we still have only 27 applications for the 8 projects, and this is surprising. However, there is good news. Tim Matson has made his selection already. Applications were unusual with none received for botany. Walt stated the applications looked good. We had a female applicant from Puerto Rico. She will qualify because she is a U.S. citizen. There was also an application from a French girl who attends a NE Ohio university.
Bill MacDermott announced on Virginia Krumholz's behalf her Curator's Forum presentation highlighting the Museum's Lantern Collection during the week of April 16.
President Ganger reported we have the request from the Science Resource Center for funds to support the Teacher Enhancement Program. The Board will vote on this at its meeting today. Pete Church is working with Audubon to get funds donated for the SRC. The possibility of a member or members of Kirtlandia's Education Committee sitting in on the teacher interviews is being discussed.
Ted announced that Marcia Smith, a long-time member, is moving to Seattle to live near her daughter. We all wished her well.
Bob Taylor introduced Dr. Donald W. Jacobsen, Director of the Laboratory for Homocysteine Research at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and a professor of biology and chemistry at Cleveland State. Dr. Jacobson's topic today was "Homocysteine - An Important Risk Factor for Cardiovascular Disease". Homocysteine is an amino acid, and elevated levels of it have been tied to several health problems, such as birth defects, cognitive impairment, and vascular disease. Determinants of higher levels appear to be age, gender, nutrition, life style, state of health, and genetic factors. Dr. Jacobson's research indicates that folic acid, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12 may be the clue to treatment. Since January 1998 the FDA has mandated the addition of folic acid to cereals and flour products to help prevent birth defects.
According to Dr. Jacobson, the diets of most people today do not include enough proteins, fruits, and vegetables that would provide the amounts of folic acid and B vitamins to keep their homocysteine levels low. Therefore, Dr. Jacobson gave us a recipe to use, as follows: Folic Acid - 400-800 mcg/day; Vitamin B12 - 500 mcg/day; and Vitamin B6 - 25-100 mg/day.
After a lively question and answer period, the meeting adjourned at 11:48 a.m.