On May 18, 2009, Proviso Mathematics and Science Academy will host its 2nd Annual Research Symposium where students will present yearlong research conducted alongside mentors in a variety of fields.
“Research and inquiry are central tenets of work at the academy,” said PMSA Principal Ed Moyer. “During the first two years at PMSA, students have opportunities to work with scientists, doctors, artists, professors and other professionals to engage in meaningful, real-world efforts. It is important that our students become more comfortable and skilled with research and that they have opportunities to research in their field of choice.”
PMSA Senior Zanfina Rrahmani, who plans to attend Loyola University for pre-medicine, is currently participating in the mentorship program. She worked with Dr. Alan Wolfe, of Loyola, the entire year in Loyola’s scientific lab. Her research project was studying response regulators in E. coli.
Rrahmani said the program not only encouraged her to follow her dream career path, but also better prepared her for it.
“The mentorship program is very challenging,” said Rrahmani. “But, I’ve taken away so much from the experience. There are a lot of medical students who do this during med school. So, it’s good that I’ve gotten experience and exposure early. This program really opened my eyes. I couldn’t believe some of the research being conducted. I learned scientific lab techniques, and I also learned that Scientists study things you wouldn’t even imagine.”
Dr. Wolfe said, “This program is amazing. Year after year students come to study at the lab. Students get hands on experience to find out what science is all about. It’s very different than what it is taught in the classroom. Here, we don’t know the answers. It’s a path of discovery. When we don’t get the answers we want we change direction. Through this program, students learn the value of research. They experience the excitement, frustration, and joy of hard work.”
PTHS 209 Superintendent Dr. Nettie Collins-Hart expressed her gratitude for the mentorship program and the powerful impact it can have on students as a whole.
“The experiences that our students gain through programs such as this are priceless,” said Collins-Hart. “I am grateful to all of the professionals who supported our students and allowed them to take a closer look at their dreams. This gave our students hands on learning which is what true education is about.”
The Research Symposium will take place on May 18, 2009 at PMSA from 9:15 am until 6:30 pm. The PTHS Board will host a special recognition kick-off earlier in the day in appreciation of our community partners in this educational endeavor.