APC Budding Biologists Transition Year Experience 2012
Aisling Wolfe, St AngelasCollege, Maebh Mulcahy, StMarys Charleville, Muireann OShea, Colaiste Muire Ennis
Twenty six transition year students from around Ireland spent a week at the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre (APC), UCC recently exploring biological science and research.
Students had an action packed week involving hands-on experiments in microbiology, food science and anatomy, and learning about APC research and technologies. The students visited the Dialysis Unit at Cork University Hospital where Dr Liam Plant and his colleagues highlighted the important of science, technology and biomedical engineering for safe and effective dialysis at the hospital or at home. Students also had a tour Merck MSD's centre of excellence at Brinny, county Cork which specialises in the fermentation, purification and sterile filling of Biotech products. In addition, the students had workshops on GM Food, Careers, CVs and Presentation Skills and a tour of UCC.
Maírín-Rua Hayes from Gaelcholáiste Choilm commented “I have realised I need to change subjects for 5th year, as I’m now seriously considering doing science at third level. The whole week was a fantastic experience, offering insight and guidance for future careers.”
“I most enjoyed the food experiments because I learnt how science has an impact on food and how chefs use different techniques to create dishes e.g. using liquid nitrogen to create decorative toppings” said David Donovan, Schull Community College.
The Budding Biologists Transition Year Experience programme has been running for five years and is highly subscribed, receiving more than 80 applications this year. The programme is part of the APC’s education and outreach programme for secondary schools which aims to stimulate interest in science and highlight opportunities for careers in science. The APC also offers laboratory workshops, school talks and organises the national Science Raps competition as well as co-ordinating the Munster section of Debating Science Issues. Further details can be seen on http://apc.ucc.ie.