HANNA PETERSEN PHOTO Grade 11 and 12 PHSS students analyze a 3D printed crime scene for clues.

Students solve crimes in forensics workshops

Geneskool visits PHSS and Eke Me-Xi

Using the power of science, students at Port Hardy secondary school (PHSS) were able to solve a miniature murder.

The fictional crime scene took place on a 3D printed beach and the students had to use forensic methodologies such as blood typing and fingerprinting to determine who committed the crime.

The June 22 workshop was a part of Genome BC’s Geneskool, which aims to introduce students to the study of genomics (the science that aims to decipher and understand the entire genetic information of an organism encoded in DNA).

The Geneskool workshop, which also took place at Eke Me-Xi, was presented by three volunteers from the University of Victoria’s Let’s Talk Science program.

“It’s a really important upcoming field,” said presenter Andrew Agbay, a UVic graduate student who researches Parkinson’s Disease.

“These activities give a fun perspective on genetics and genes instead of learning from a textbook or having a power point presentation,” said Agaby, adding “Presenting genetics in this way definitely engages the students a lot more.”

Students were presented with a scenario and an accompanying crime scene and were introduced to various technologies and concepts, such as the analysis of DNA electrophoresis gels, as they analyzed each clue in order to solve the crime.

“We have had a lot of students say ‘I really loved the workshop and had fun today’, so it’s been great,” said Agbay, adding “If we can get more students listening and more students learning and that is really what we are here to do and what it is all about.”

Presenter David Mora Peera, a student from the University of the Fraser Valley, who has a passion for youth outreach said he was glad to take the opportunity to visit the North Island with UVic’s Let’s Talk Science program.

“I think for all of us we started doing science because we were curious about the world around us and we were brave enough to start asking questions,” said Peera, adding “The thing we always try to encourage people to do, whether you are in kindergarten or 70-years-old, is to be curious and let that curiosity drive your life so you never stop asking questions and are always open to finding solutions.”

Agbay added that he’s thankful Genome BC collaborated with Let’s Talk Science to make the workshops possible.

“I have to thank Genome BC for making the [crime scene] kits because without them we wouldn’t be doing these workshops,” said Agbay, adding, “I think students who are in high school really value from something like this.”

Genome BC, is a non-profit research organization, leads genomics innovation on Canada’s West Coast and facilitates the integration of genomics into society whose major investors are the Province of British Columbia and the Government of Canada through Genome Canada and Western Economic Diversification Canada.

 

HANNA PETERSEN PHOTO The fictional victim and suspects can be spotted in model crime scene used to teach students about genomics.

Just Posted

‘Police are ready’ for legal pot, say Canadian chiefs

But Canadians won’t see major policing changes as pot becomes legal

Port Hardy Fire Rescue’s open house a blazing hit

PHFR Lt. Harding explained that the organization is always looking for more recruits.

Gwa’sala-’Nakwaxda’xw Nation drafts first phase of passive housing project

The housing project will have 96 residential units for low-income families.

North Island Seniors Housing Foundation requests land from Port Hardy Council

“The foundation members will be coming to council with more information at a future date.”

Mayoral candidate David Stewart steps away from Port Alice election

Port Alice has unlikely chance of holding a by-election early next year.

Video: An up-close look at beluga whales in Hudson Bay

An up-close look as some belugas greet whale watchers off the coast of Churchill, Manitoba

Canucks: Pettersson in concussion protocol, Beagle out with broken forearm

Head coach Travis Green called the hit ‘a dirty play’

5 tips for talking to your kids about cannabis

Health officials recommend sharing a harm reduction-related message.

NHL players say Canada’s legalization of marijuana won’t impact them

NHL players say the legalization of marijuana in Canada won’t change how they go about their business.

Automated cars could kill wide range of jobs, federal documents say

Internal government documents show that more than one million jobs could be lost to automated vehicles, with ripple effects far beyond the likeliest professions.

Private marijuana stores should shut down, Mike Farnworth says

B.C. has approved 62 licences, but they still need local approval

HPV vaccine does not lead to riskier sex among teen girls: UBC

Girls are less likely to have sex now than they were a decade ago

VIDEO: Rescued eagle released in Ucluelet

“I’m very confident that he’s going to make it. He’s done very well.”

Koreas agree to break ground on inter-Korean railroad

The rival Koreas are holding high-level talks Monday to discuss further engagement amid a global diplomatic push to resolve the nuclear standoff with North Korea.

Most Read