UF’s College of Sciences has opened the world of research up to area high school students on a broad scale with a research program this summer. Nineteen high school students are conducting research of all kinds with several UF professors and students through June and July.
After mentoring students at DNA Day on campus and through the honors gifted program at Findlay High School (FHS), Mike Edelbrock, Ph.D., professor of biology, worked with others to gain funding and construct a research program for high school students.
With the assistance of Judy Withrow, gifted coordinator at FHS, a grant proposal was submitted and approved to fund the supplies needed for a portion of the projects. Area high school students interested in science and possibly a college education in science were welcome to participate in the program with several UF faculty and students.
“The goal was to connect students to the world of research and have them work with our students,” said Edelbrock.
All faculty members working with the high school research program are conducting research within different areas of science.
“Since we are already doing research in different areas, we each tried to think of research that would be appropriate for high school students,” said Edelbrock.
Although the research conducted through this program is not as high of a level expected of college students, it’s close. The areas of research conducted include growing salamander cells, mutation and DNA damage, antibiotic resistance, crinoids (sea lilies) and pig in vitro fertilization.
“We want the students to feel involved in the research and do some independent work, but the ideas are designed around current UF student research,” said Edelbrock.
UF students have presented most of these research topics in the past. With several student liaisons helping with this program, projects from past years have the ability to advance forward.
“I believe in a team setting, and science -as a process,” said Edelbrock. “It’s a team of people who advance science.”
Once school convenes in the fall, the students participating in this program will present his or her research experience and findings to classmates in high school chemistry and biology classes.
The high school students who successfully complete the research projects this summer will have the opportunity to present at the Ohio Academy of Science, which will be held in 2013 at UF.
“We certainly have an interest to continue this program,” said Edelbrock. “We have a duty to serve the community first, and if we do that well, it will lead to more students choosing UF.”
For more information regarding the high school research program, contact Mike Edelbrock at firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-434-6994.