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High school students get a hands-on lab experience

Prof. Andre Simpson explains the equipment to the recipients of the Outstanding High School Student Science Award. (Photo by Ken Jones)

Six of Southern Ontario’s best high school students visited UTSC to get a first-hand look at university life and the experience of working in a top-notch research lab.

The students were recipients of the annual Outstanding High School Student Science Award, which is awarded to students of high academic achievement who demonstrate a passion for science.

Each year, the honorees come to the campus to attend a lecture, shadow graduate students and use leading-edge laboratory instrumentation.

André Simpson, Director of UTSC’s Environmental Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Centre, says the experience instills enthusiasm for research at an early age, helping students be more competitive at a national level. The program is also an opportunity for the campus to develop and nurture its connections to local schools and private sector organizations.

This year’s participants made use of imaging and magnetic resonance equipment to determine the chemical components of a caffeinated energy drink.

“The students were outstanding,” says Simpson. “They were really engrossed in the lab experiments.”

© University of Toronto Scarborough