• Being Boston: Teacher's passion for science blazing path for future careers

    By: Sarah Wroblewski

    Updated:

    A club at a Boston school is blazing a path for future careers in Science.

    Headmaster Dr. Lindsa McIntyre has transformed the Jeremiah Burke High School in Dorchester; focusing on the whole child, academically and socially. 

    "LOVE the Science Club because in the back of our mind is this understanding that we need to get our students ready for more than the classroom, more than the school, we need to get them ready for life," said McIntyre. "Many of them have been historically marginalized and left out of the learning environment."

    The Science Club is an afterschool program helping to target those students. It's a passion of science teacher Dr. Carl Reid.

    "It's a labor of love, I'm very grateful to be able to do that. To have this club," said Reid.

    And the students are, too.

    "It has me going on the internet and researching things I normally wouldn't even think about when I'm home," said student Kamari Armstrong.

    Research for competing in the Boston Science Fair.

    "We're growing hair follicles and after they finish growing, we are going to radiate them and cool them down to see how they react," said Armstrong. "We're putting hair follicle cells inside of a cultured media to see how well they'd grow under certain conditions."

    Students are paired up with mentors like Bio-tech entrepreneur and former MIT Professor Dr. James Sherley.

    "I just get a great amount of excitement from being able to have the opportunity to work with them," said Sherley. "We hope that they're getting a really good sense of what science is all about. It's not the facts of the book, it's the process of getting to have facts to put in a book. They're doing that now."

    Dr. Reid is hoping this club will not only provide an opportunity for these students after school, but will have a longer impact.

    "Really the takeaway for me is just passing the torch. It's the idea that when I was younger and I was coming up, people stepped into my life, and opened my eyes to different things. Gave me opportunities, and I want to do the same. I want to leave a legacy where, when I look back I can say hey, I helped students and others get interested in science. And helped them move on in their chosen fields and passions," said Reid. 

    Mass. Life Sciences Center awarded the school a $100,000 grant to buy modern equipment for the Science Club, which helped two of the groups win awards at the Boston Science Fair. 

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