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Obesity Summer Camp Makes Biotechnology

Obesity Summer Camp Makes Biotechnology
Practical for High School Seniors

Jackie Aldridge, the coordinator of the Obesity and its Outcomes

Biotechnology Summer Camp at Delaware Technical and Community College’s Stanton campus, is equal parts enthusiasm, determination and optimism. In the third year of the camp, part of the Bridges to the Baccalaureate Degree Program, Aldridge has overcome low attendance, limited laboratory space and other challenges to provide high school seniors with inroads to a science or medical career.

“The purpose of a Biotechnology Summer Camp is to spark the curiosity of area high school students for learning science and applying it in a laboratory setting. The idea behind the camp is that science can be challenging as well as fun, exciting and practical,” she says. “Obesity is one of numerous health disparity issues among different ethnic groups. We want these students to go back to their communities and educate them about what they can do. We are very excited about this program.”

Funded by a National Institutes of Health grant, the Bridges program is a partnership between DTCC and the University of Delaware. The program was created to introduce minority high school seniors to college-level science and motivate them to pursue a career in a biomedical field. Aldridge notes that New Castle County, one of only three counties in the state, has only one Black dentist, despite a population that has been growing rapidly for more than a decade.

“The percentage of minority students going into the sciences and actually making careers in the sciences is too low,” she says.

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