Have you heard of college lab classes? Well if you haven’t, they are one-unit classes that you have to take as an undergraduate, and they are just as hard as three-unit lecture courses. Although science labs are time consuming, difficult and tedious they have by far been one of the best experiences I have encountered in college.
After getting hands-on experience in different areas of science through my biology and chemistry classes, I have genuinely come to feel like the real Heisenburg from “Breaking Bad,” if you are familiar with that television show. In my biology lab alone, I can remember when we were learning about how muscles works. In learning this, it required us to use chicken parts. These chicken parts weren’t your typical thigh and wing but instead the mashed up form of them. Although not appealing to the eye, this extraction of DNA from chicken parts was by far one of the most interesting things I had done.
On the other hand, I look at my chemistry lab experiences as home cooking taken to another level. In one lab experiment it was very interesting to learn that I could begin with a yellow compound only to end up with a white product. Feeling proud of my compound, I surveyed the class only to discover that mine was the most pure. It was during this same lab that one student started a small fire. At the beginning of the semester you always talk about lab safety and what to do if a situation arises, but to actually have something like that happen was quite exciting. My chemistry professor handled the incident with such calmness that you would’ve guessed he had experience this – and worse – before. In all seriousness, it is very interesting how we are able to perform real life experiments that, say, maybe a real chemist is performing. All in all, I’ve always seen myself to be a hands-on learner and for USD to allow its students to take lecture material and put it into action in such a small setting brings intellectual growth to another level.