From the 7th to the 9th July 2021, Nakeysha Hartley joined 43 Queensland high school students to experience the life as a STEM researcher apart of the QUT's High School STEM Internship.
Here is what Nakeysha had to say about her experience:
During my QUT STEM internship, I got to work in the Children's Burns and Trauma Research Institution alongside biomedical scientists and QUT undergraduates. First, we were given a run-down of the laboratory and all of the scientific equipment within it. We were shown how cultured human keratinocytes were grown with media and viewed them under a light microscope to determine confluency.
Our experiment involved exposing the keratinocytes to two extremes: we placed them in a 52-degree sterilised water bath, and added 0.5 mM of hydrogen peroxide into the wells for one hour.
Within this interval we prepared LIVE/DEAD fluorescent stains which would allow us to distinguish live keratinocytes from dead ones using a EVOS fluorescent microscope with a green/red filter. After the hour was over, we washed the exposed keratinocytes with DPBS, added the fluorescent stains, and incubated them at room temperature in the hood to protect them from light for 30 minutes. Finally, we washed them again and viewed them under the fluorescent microscope. We were going to begin our second experiment, however COVID restrictions limited my internship to the one day.
However, it was an incredible experience to be working in a lab and speaking with scientists. I feel as though I've learnt so much and definitely want to study biomedical science in the future."