Teen interns gain bioscience research skills

August 29, 2007

By Flinn Foundation

[Source: Ray Parker, Arizona Republic] — A group of teens from Tempe, Chandler, and Gilbert spent their summer delving into DNA and peptides at ASU’s Biodesign Institute, picking up skills useful for careers in science. The pay might have been minimal, but the perks were plenty. “This was really awesome,” said Hannah Peckham, one of 26 high school interns to join researchers at Arizona State University. Peckham, 17, is a senior at Tempe Preparatory Academy. The Gilbert teen worked with researchers on a vaccine for the Norwalk virus, which causes intestinal infections.

The students interned for six weeks at the Biodesign Institute, part of a program to strengthen the Valley’s bioscience industry. The institute’s high school program has grown from 16 students last year to 26 this summer. The teens were paid $6.75 an hour, but that wasn’t the draw. “I’m definitely going to put it on my college application because having this kind of real-world experience helps,” said Peckham, who wants to study medicine. The interns shadowed and helped graduate-student researchers involved in a variety of research areas including health care, infectious diseases and renewable energy. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]