Student event addresses concerns about numbers entering pathology careersMonday, 18 June, 2012
Over 70 secondary school pupils are currently taking part in a workshop series held at Robert Gordon University (RGU) which has been designed to build their awareness of pathology, the study of disease, as part of a nationwide effort to boost numbers entering the specialty.
Organised collaboratively between the university and Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, the workshop programme is part of National Pathology Year which aims to increase understanding of pathology and its many associated careers.
S5 and S6 pupils from 12 schools across the North-east are participating in one of three days held within RGU’s St Andrew Street building on 13, 18 and 19 June. Four interactive workshops run simultaneously across the day, each exploring a major discipline underneath the pathology umbrella: Immunology, Clinical Biochemistry, Microbiology and Histopathology.
During the workshops, students get hands-on experience of various techniques including tissue staining, microscopy and blood sample analysis. Held within RGU’s laboratories, the workshops will help students gain a wider appreciation of pathology and its 19 different specialities, which include virology, haematology, veterinary pathology and metabolic medicine.
One keynote lecture per day will also be delivered by expert practitioners from Aberdeen Royal Infirmary’s Departments of Laboratory Medicine. David Wilson kicked off the speaker programme on Wednesday 13 June with a presentation on allergy testing. This will be followed today (Monday 18 June) by Dr Duncan Stephen’s presentation on toxicology. Dr Arthur Strachan will conclude the keynotes tomorrow (Tuesday 19 June) with an exploration of drugs in sport.
The nationwide campaign to raise awareness of pathology is set upon a backdrop of concerns that the specialty is not getting the numbers of students coming through that it needs.
Dr Neil Emmison, programme leader for Biomedical Sciences at RGU said: “This workshop series is a fantastic opportunity for us to highlight the vast array of professions within the pathology industry. Given the very nature of the profession, biomedical scientists are often considered to play an invisible role in the treatment of patients. What we aim to do is show where we fit into the patient experience.”
Top right (l-r): Cameron Elphinstone (16, from Hazlehead Academy). Freya Laurence (16, from The Albyn School), Leanne Meldrum (16, from Turriff Academy)
Bottom left (l-r): Eve Fordyce (16, from Turriff Academy), Kate Falconer (17, The Albyn School), Usama El-Zarouk (17, Hazlehead Academy)
Notes to editors
- Clinical Biochemistry is the study of changes in chemical composition of body fluids in the diagnosis and monitoring of disease processes.
- Immunology is the study of the body’s immune system and its disorders.
- Microbiology is the diagnosis of infection caused by bacteria, fungi, parasites and viruses; the identification of the best treatment options for infection; and the monitoring of antibiotic resistance. It also includes testing for how well a patient is responding to treatment of infection.
- Histopathology is the study of diseased tissue.
Schools taking part in the three workshop days are:
- Albyn School
- Alford Academy
- Cults Academy
- Dyce Academy
- Hazlehead Academy
- Inverurie Academy
- Mackie Academy
- Meldrum Academy
- Oldmachar Academy
- Robert Gordon College
- Turriff Academy
- Westhill Academy
Communications Officer |Faculty of Health and Social Care
Robert Gordon University
Tel: 01224 262389