Local high school students will have the chance to do their best CSI impression when ‘Genome BC Geneskool Summer Camp’ returns to Capilano University this week. Through fun, hands-on activities in state-of-the-art labs facilities, students will learn about DNA, genetics, gene function and even bacterial transformation. In one of the activities, the students even get to analyze a “crime scene” and put their newfound knowledge to use to solve the “whodunit.” This popular summer camp illustrates the use of genomics in everyday life and affords participants an opportunity to learn new methods and techniques that they can apply to upcoming science courses once the school year begins.
The Genome BC Geneskool program has been involved in communities throughout BC since 2004. “Students are really enthusiastic about the camp, because it highlights the fun and relevance of science to everyday lives,” says Sally Greenwood, Vice President, Communications and Education at Genome BC. “We explain the scientific concepts and how they can be applied to real life situations, and explore the potential applications and impact of genomic technologies on society.”
Part of the program is designed to get students working in teams to learn about science in a cooperative manner. Past participants have enjoyed ongoing relationships and have even developed a Geneskool ‘campers’ blog. “Students had a great time with other kids learning about science. For those eager campers it made science fiction science reality,” commented Camp Director Sam Lee who ran Geneskool at Vancouver Island University in earlier this summer.
“Our aim is that after attending ‘Genome BC Geneskool camp,’ students will continue to appreciate the value of science and math in today’s knowledge-based economy. We are hopeful that students not only develop greater understanding of genetic sciences, but realize the wealth of opportunity that exists in scientific disciplines,” says Greenwood.
“The impact and applications of genome sciences in this century will be profound and far-reaching and we believe it is important that as a society we understand it,” says Dr. Alan Winter, President & CEO of Genome BC. “Engaging students in innovative education programs such as ‘Genome BC Geneskool’ helps them understand the significance of the science in a way that is accessible and exciting.”
About Genome British Columbia:
Genome British Columbia is a catalyst for the life sciences cluster on Canada’s West Coast, and manages a cumulative portfolio of over $550M in research projects and science and technology platforms. Working with governments, academia and industry across sectors such as forestry, fisheries, agriculture, environment, bioenergy, mining and human health, the goal of the organization is to generate social and economic benefits for British Columbia and Canada.
In addition to research, Genome BC is committed to openness, meaningful dialogue, public outreach, and educational leadership, and as such, seeks to foster understanding and appreciation of the significance of genomics and proteomics science and technology among teachers, students, and the general public.
For more information about Genome BC Geneskool camp visit www.genomebc.ca/education/outreach-programs/geneskool-camp or email Camp Director Sam Lee at email@example.com.
Jennifer Boon, Communications Specialist