July 16, 2010 | Christine Buckley, Cameron Faustman & Sean Flynn ‘Camp DNA’ A molecular genetics workshop trains future high school teachers in up-to-date lab techniques. Copy Link Laboratory instructor Robin Walker, a Ph.D. student in plant science, explains results to fourth- and fifth-year students from the Neag School of Education, during a two-week course on molecular genetics popularly known as 'Camp DNA.' The workshop, which is funded by the National Science Foundation, aims to provide future Connecticut high school science teachers with the training and tools to use the experimental lab exercises demonstrated in their high school classrooms. Photo by Cameron Faustman Under the direction of plant science professor Gerald Berkowitz, Camp DNA students use current molecular techniques, such as gel electrophoresis and polymerase chain reactions, to isolate, replicate, and observe mutations to DNA in the lab. Participants include 12 undergraduate students and two local high school teachers. Shown here from left are Amy Pearl, Jonathan Glenn, Greg Tutolo, Emily Kieswetter, and Danielle Jeffries. Tutolo teaches at E.O. Smith High School in Storrs. Photo by Cameron Faustman Berkowitz has been running the workshop for the past five years, and some local high schools are now incorporating lessons from the course into their curricula. Shown here are from left, Brittani Mango, Deana Semenza, and Tara Butler. Photo by Cameron Faustman Education student Tom DiMauro practices lab techniques he has learned. "This is an experiential program," says Berkowitz. "We teach teachers to replace their lectures on DNA with an adventure in which students can do experiments and see things like DNA mutations for themselves." Photo by Sean Flynn.