High School Experiential Research Classes

BlueSTEM AgriLearning Center is honored to be partnering with area high schools to enable students to conduct primary research with USDA GRL scientists. Eligible students work on the scientific process, designing authentic research projects, technical writing, creating professional results posters, and managing professional research equipment.

The first two years of the partnership (2015-16 and 2016-17) students from El Reno High School (Oklahoma) participated in the project. Yukon High School (Oklahoma) joined the collaborative partnership in 2017-18. The success of the partnership is measured by the number of students who are interested in enrolling in the honors level course, as well as the student presentations at various research symposiums and scholarly fairs.

USDA GRL scientists empower the students to look beyond a traditional science fair project and develop advanced research skills. Scientists utilize their own research projects and allow students to collaborate on specific elements. The students are able to learn from the professional scientists and publish their own research.

Ben Houston, EHS senior ’18, has furthered his research interests and has been named a Fleming Fellow with the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (OMRF).  Ben’s original research project, under the tutelage of Dr. Brian Kindiger, explored plant genetics similar to cancer cell research. Ben’s opportunity with OMRF is a first for El Reno High School, and provides validity to BlueSTEM’s  Experiential Research program.