SFHS students learn DNA at Lakeland


A GROUP OF OVER 40 science students from Sheboygan Falls High School recently spent time at Lakeland College, working with top Lakeland students to learn how to cut, splice and manipulate DNA. The SFHS students, who are enrolled in Lakeland’s Concurrent Academic Progress Program (CAPP) life sciences class, conducted agarose gel electrophoresis through assistance from Lakeland students. - Submitted photo A GROUP OF OVER 40 science students from Sheboygan Falls High School recently spent time at Lakeland College, working with top Lakeland students to learn how to cut, splice and manipulate DNA. The SFHS students, who are enrolled in Lakeland’s Concurrent Academic Progress Program (CAPP) life sciences class, conducted agarose gel electrophoresis through assistance from Lakeland students. - Submitted photo More than 40 Sheboygan Falls High School students recently spent half-a-day at Lakeland College, working with top Lakeland students and learning how to cut, splice and manipulate DNA.

The high school students, enrolled in Lakeland’s Concurrent Academic Progress Program (CAPP) life sciences class, conducted agarose gel electrophoresis.

Learning from and working with standout Lakeland students Addison Mertler, C.J. Mueller, Emily Thomas and Brooke Wilder Corrigan, the Falls students isolated DNA from bacterial cells, cut that DNA using enzymes, and visualized the resulting DNA fragments on a gel.

“The feedback I’ve received from my students is that they had an incredible, invaluable experience at Lakeland College,” said Pamela Salm, who teaches the Falls CAPP class. “They had a wonderful time using equipment in a college laboratory setting with college professors and college students helping them. They were very excited about the experience.”

After lunch, before viewing the gels, he Falls students chose two of four 15-minute informational sessions – computer science and robotics, mammalian cell culture, exercise science research or ecology research in Wisconsin and Belize.

“This group was very hardworking, engaged and fun to work with,” said Greg Smith, Lakeland professor of biology, of the high school visitors. “Their love and enthusiasm for science was outstanding, and it was exciting and fun to be able to share our equipment and knowledge with them.”

Smith said when the SFHS students viewed their brightly orange-lit DNA gel samples, they were excited.

“Teachers live for that moment,” Smith said. “You hear them talking about how cool it is, and it’s really satisfying to hear them discuss amongst themselves what they’ve just accomplished as they’re walking away.”

Smith was proud of Mertler, Mueller, Thomas and Wilder- Corrigan, who took the lead in teaching the high school students how to conduct the complex experimentation and use Lakeland’s sophisticated scientific equipment.

“I think high school students can see themselves in our students, who are only a few years older than they are,” Smith said. “The high school students really seem to relate to our outstanding students, and maybe they even think, ‘I want to be like that.’”


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