Inspiring pathology tour for school students

Badger Hill academy school children looking at cultures in microbiology

A local school was welcomed into the University Hospital of North Tees so pupils could see what happens in a hospital pathology laboratory.

Around 30 primary school children from Badger Hill Academy in Brotton were given a guided tour of the Pathology department in October.

Split into three groups, the children were taken on journey through a few of the speciality departments. They got to see the Histology department and were shown how organs are preserved, dissected and placed under the microscope. In Cytology they observed samples down a microscope that were being analysed to see if there were any cancerous cells, then on to look at how blood samples are prepared and examined in Haematology. Finally, they toured the Microbiology department, where bacterial cultures were grown and parasites on display for the children to look at.

“All the staff in the department loved having the children visit and learn all about careers in science”

– Senior Biomedical Scientist, Andrea Davies

Senior Biomedical Scientist, Andrea Davies organised the event with the school and welcomed everyone to the afternoon’s tour.

Andrea said, “All the staff in the department loved having the children visit and learn all about careers in science – it gives the staff immense job satisfaction and the opportunity to showcase the work we all do on a daily basis.”

Inspiring a future generation of scientistsBadger Hill academy school children looking at blood samples in haematology

The tour ran as part of a voluntary STEM project Andrea has been leading on, which aims to raise the profile of science in school and inspire the next generation of scientists. A grant from The Royal Society for Science helped pay for transport so the school could get to the hospital and back.

Andrea added, “The tour seemed to do very well and when I attended Badger Hill Academy afterwards to pick up feedback forms all the children were very positive.”

“Each pupil told me all about their favourite part of the afternoon, which ranged from looking at the parasites and worms, to seeing how blood samples are processed. One little girl even told me it was the best school trip they had ever had!”

“It was really lovely to see how engaged the children were with each of the specialties and we really hope that the tour has inspired some future budding scientists.”

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