It is only January and already the Oncofertility Saturday Academies (OSA) are off to a busy start. Last weekend, Mary Zelinski, PhD, who heads one of the Oncofertility Consortium's research projects, launched this year’s Oregon academy at the Oregon Primate Research Center (ONPRC). A group of 10 high school students comprised of eight girls and two boys got an overview of oncofertility and a tour of the research center. The students come from different schools, two of them driving up to an hour to attend the Saturday programs.
In addition to a tour of the primate center, the OSA students performed hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining on sectioned ovaries. This coming weekend, they will have the opportunity to view these sections under a microscope. H&E staining is widely used in biological research as it stains the cell nucleus blue and other structures a pink or red color. This year, the Oregon OSA will meet in the newly completed Science Learning Lab at the ONPRC. The educational research lab, supported by a generous grant from a private donor, can accommodate up to 24 students and will greatly expand the opportunities available for visitors to interact with Primate Center researchers. An open house will be held tomorrow, Friday, January 27th and will provide the OSA students a place to learn about oncofertility and basic science research over the next few weeks.
Simultaneously, tomorrow is the launch of the Chicago OSA program with juniors and seniors in high school from five schools in the Chicagoland area. In the next few weeks we will, continue to share more about both of these exceptional programs, and the OSA programs at the University of Pennsylvania and University of California at San Diego.