Kennedy Stodden, a Biomedical Science student at the Center for Advanced Technical Studies (The Center) in Chapin, dreams of going to medical school and pursuing a career in medical research or anesthesiology.
This summer, she was allowed to do a two-week internship inside a biomedical lab at the University of Verona in Italy. During her training, Kennedy was tutored by Professor Ilaria Decimo and her staff. She was involved in studies concerning the infusion of stem cells in the brain and regeneration of the spinal cord after a traumatic injury. Kennedy was also involved in immunofluorescence experiments, gene expression, protein quantification, and microsurgery.
Lexington-Richland School District Five students at all four high schools have the opportunity to study at The Center. Through this partnership and offerings of the Biomedical Sciences program, Kennedy took the Biotechnician Assistant Credentialing Exam (BACE), an industry-recognized exam designed to assess core skills and knowledge sets identified by industry and represented within the academic and performance standards of Biotechnology programs. “Everything I did in my classes at The Center, especially in the second year, prepared me to go into that lab and know what I was doing,” Stodden said. “The people who worked in the lab were surprised that I knew what they were doing and had done some of it before in a high school setting.”
Kennedy’s teacher, Julie Krusen, added, “One of our goals for Biomedical Science students is to provide opportunities to set themselves apart. By taking Biomedical Innovations, Kennedy had content knowledge and research experience that helped set her apart. We are so proud of Kennedy for having the passion and commitment to seek and participate in a summer research program, especially in another country.” During her internship, Kennedy was the youngest and only international student studying at the lab. “I was very fortunate to experience working inside the lab and participate in what they do every day because it was amazing,” Stodden said.
Al Gates, director of Career and Technical Education at The Center, added, “The Biomedical Science program at the Center helped Kennedy qualify for this experience, and the knowledge and skills she learned in the program contributed to the success she experienced. Career and Technical Education programs at The Center and our high schools support School District Five’s mission and vision of developing productive citizens who can contribute to a global society. We are proud of Kennedy, Ms. Krusen, and Ms. Howell.”