Cool Students: Students using mice in school for research
High school is meant to prep students for college with rigorous coursework and essays. At Elkhart Memorial High School students get college ready in a hands on way.
Inside the Mouse Lab as it is commonly called by students, they take care of about 30-40 mice each day.
“The mice in our lab are better cared for than they would be out in the field. They’re very healthy, they live longer than they should and they’re very content where they are,” said Physics Teacher John Taylor.
The students take good care of the mice. This in turn allows them to do research and experience.
“I think it’s cool because it’s different than what you’d expect in high school,” said Louel Lucas who is a Senior.
Students study the effects on artificial gravity, sleep patterns, and the impact of sugar on memory just to name a few.
Throughout the experiments, students gain other skills like teamwork and how to work through problems.
“One of the most important skills you can learn is communication because when you’re presenting an experiment you have to communicate your complex ideas,” said Senior Melissa Luft.
There have been students who have started research in high school and continued that research in graduate school.
“For me it’s very rewarding to see where students end up and how they can take their experience here and grow from it as they go out,” Taylor added.