For the past two days, I’ve been going to the science building at NYIT to use their new microplate reader for my research project. Yesterday, my partner and I went in just to learn how to use it. We expected the professor to teach us or at least supervise us, but he just threw us in the faculty lab and gave us several manuals and told us to try to work with it. So we did, and through hours of reading, going through the wizard and watching tutorials we finally figured out how to use a microplate reader.
Today, we brought in our samples to test. We used acetic acid (concentrated vinegar) to solubilize our dye, so now my sense of smell is distorted and I might smell like feet and vinegar for the rest of my life.
Anyway, we got all the data and statistics in an hour, but we had to wait there because we didn’t have a ride home. After an hour or so of waiting, the professor came into the room and asked us to teach his students how to use the machine. No one there knew how to use it because they just bought it along with a many other machines/devices this year with a grant. Everyone there was pretty unwilling to learn which is understandable since 1) we are juniors in high school 2) they didn’t even know the purpose of learning about the machines. From what I gathered from their conversations, most were seniors who, aspiring to be doctors, were fulfilling some sort of research class requirement.
We ended up teaching them briefly and then leaving. It was an interesting experience.