This is the second year running that sixth form students from the local school have visited Europe’s leading science and technology park to work in the professional laboratories on site.
The science project was funded with a “Partnership Grant - 'Algae! The answer to our food, pharmaceutical and energy needs?'” from The Royal Society, and led to the school partnering up with Dr John Dodd and the R&D team of AlgaeCytes Ltd.
The students will monitor the growth of algae in a professional laboratory and present their findings at the end to other students and the AlgaeCytes team.
The microbiology techniques that were demonstrated to the students in 2014 have been taken on by the school under science teachers Jackie Wilson and Victoria Grist’s supervision, and are usually taught at university level. The programme has been proven to be worthwhile, as all students who did the project last year went on to apply for science-based courses at University as a result.
John Dodd, Head of R&D and co-founder of AlgaeCytes, worked with AlgaeCyte’s Research Technician Georgina Andrews and the school to manage the project.
John said, “It’s great to see more students participating this year because of the success of last year’s project. We have gone into more detail about algae and associated bacteria this time so that the students get even more out of the experience.
He added, “By the end, the students are more confident and inquisitive but fundamentally they are more inclined to look at a career in science afterwards.”
Student Jasmine Hale, 16, who has undertaken work experience at Discovery Park before, said, “I have been looking forward to coming back to do this project because I’m aiming to study biochemistry at university and then hopefully getting a job here afterwards.”
Kimberley Anderson, Project Manager at Discovery Park, said "We are delighted to have been able to support this programme for the second year. We always hope to inspire more people into the science industry and it’s great to see students engaging and showing an interest in the work that takes place here.”
Source: Pillory Barn
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