Middle and high school students interested in science and engineering may enroll in the department’s week-long Summer Science and Academic Enrichment course. Classes are taught by faculty, and labs are taught by staff and graduate students. Some of the hands-on lab activities each student performs include
In addition to lab-work and classes, students tour
Students also learn about finding and using scientific literature, current topics in bioengineering, and careers. Evening and weekend activities may include movies, tennis, swimming, racquetball and trips to the John C. Calhoun House, the S.C. Botanical Garden, the Hanover House, and the Clemson Forest.
Since its inception, Dr. Alexey Vertegel and his lab have been the course’s primary instructors. According to Dr. Vertegel, “The field of bioengineering is very broad, including people who have studied electrical engineering, chemistry, orthopaedics, materials science, and mechanical engineering. Thus, the course is an opportunity for students to have a range of experiences in research techniques. This helps them decide areas they might or might not like to study.”
Annually, more applications are received than can be accommodated. Applications, which are accepted in the order in which they are received, are typically evenly divided among students from South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia. For the past two years, the program has accepted an international applicant.
Dr. Vertegel said that feedback on the course has been quite positive. “Former students often visit as they near high school graduation. They meet informally with our lab and often bring their parents for a tour.” He added, “If they love it, they really love it.”>
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