To promote science popularisation and increase Macao’s secondary school students’ interest in scientific research, the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) and the Macao Base for Primary & Secondary STEM Education’s Centre for Science and Engineering Promotion of the University of Macau (UM) recently arranged for local students to visit the university’s research facilities and conduct biomedical experiments, in order to help them learn more about scientific research at UM.
During the activity, students of five secondary schools, namely Fong Chong School of Taipa, Sao Paulo School, Macau Baptist College, Kao Yip Middle School, and Matteo Ricci College, visited the laboratories of the FHS’s Core Facilities, including the aquatic room and the rodent room in the Animal Research Core, and tried their hand at experiments of total colony counting.
In the laboratory, Terence Poon Chuen Wai, an associate professor in FHS explained to the students how the centre produces experimental animals that meet the recognised standards and uses transgenic and gene knockout methods to build animal models. The students conducted biomedical experiments independently, through which they learned more about related scientific theories, research skills, as well as research progress and results in precision medicine for cancer treatment at UM.
A Form 5 student from Macau Baptist College said that she had great interest in biomedical sciences and was happy to be able to ‘play’ with science during the visit. According to her, the experiments were not only interesting, but also helped to make abstract theories more concrete. Another Form 5 student from Kao Yip Middle School was amazed by the advanced zebrafish breeding system and the world-class core facilities and realised that research results were not easy to come by. A Form 4 student from Fong Chong School of Taipa said that this event allowed her to conduct experiments that she could not do in her high school, adding that this trip satisfied her curiosity about science experiments and would help her make a decision for further studies.
FHS is committed to promoting science popularisation in Macao, enhancing the love of science among local secondary school students, and cultivating more outstanding scientific talents for the city.