While high school students throughout the nation are reviewing notes and practice exams to prepare for upcoming Advanced Placement exams, students at Miller Place High School (MPHS) are taking a unique approach. Students currently enrolled in the District’s AP Biology course recently explored Stony Brook University’s Biotechnology Teaching Lab to interact with professional scientists and explore modern technology that utilizes biological systems.
The aspiring biologists explored extensive research in genetic engineering, including the CRISPR technique. While completing labs, students learned how to use the unique equipment involved in biotechnology education like centrifuges, chillettes, micropipettes, and vortex shakers to complete their lab. Kalliopi Gasparis, AP Biology student at MPHS, said she “felt like a professional scientist” during her day at Stony Brook University.
Students worked with two different restriction enzymes and learned how these enzymes cleave or cut DNA, how to use and prepare a gel using gel electrophoresis and how to change the genotype of Escherichia coli (E.coli) by transformation. Following the labs, students ventured through the student union to have lunch for an inside look at the university.
Advanced Placement is an academic program that provides high school students with college-level rigor while still in high school. Students are eligible to earn college credit or advanced standing by achieving a score of 3 (out of 5) or higher on AP course exams. The Miller Place School District aims to set its students up for a successful future and secondary education by offering several opportunities to study subjects in greater depth and offer experiences that broaden their horizons, thus providing them with new insights into their own skills and interests.