Calistoga High School’s two science teachers, Ms. Swarner and Ms. Brooks, brought the students from our new Biotechnology class to STEM day at Medtronic in Santa Rosa.
First on the agenda was a presentation by a Medtronic engineer about STEM careers, future out look, pay and types of degrees and careers within the STEM field. After this, the students were broken into small groups and rotated through each of the following groups while participating in demonstrations and Q&A sessions with engineers and scientists: coronary stents, aortic stents, renal denervation and heart valves.
Next, they toured labs within the facility including the Chemistry lab, 3D printing lab, Materials Lab and a room where students dissected a heart with scientists. In the Chemistry lab, they had the opportunity to participate in a analysis of caffeine, used their math skills to assist with samples that were ran through a high pressure liquid chromatography, next they visited the 3D printing lab and they saw large scale models of stents that were being produced and being used in marketing and advertising. The third stop was the Materials Lab and they learned about metallurgy, alloys and participated in a demonstration that showed the memory of metals used in the stents. The last lab experience was dissecting a pig heart with scientists and learning about parts, function and pathologies of the heart.
The day concluded with Medtronic’s providing a lunch where they had an informal Q&A. Their host Renee Lawson, introduced the high school internship program and encouraged all students to apply!