Taking a deeper look: biomed students dissect kidneys


Melanie Schepmans

Walking into the human body systems classroom, your nose is bombarded with the pungent odor of formaldehyde, sitting stagnant in the air. The tables are lined with razor blades, toothpicks, and scissors. As students file in and slip on a pair of exam gloves, a metal tray is placed in front of them, bearing a pig’s kidney. Biomed Academy students dissected kidneys on Thursday, April 18.  

Throughout the year, students in the human body systems classes examined the eleven organ systems of the body. To gain a more hands on understanding of the way the urinary system works, curriculum calls for a dissection of a pig kidney.  

“Other than the smell of formaldehyde, I really enjoy dissecting,” sophomore Kristine Rodriguez said. “There was a point where Doc was trying to help us since our kidney was just too tough to cut through and when he finally cut it, the inside just went everywhere.” 

For students that are planning on pursuing a career in medicine, dissecting organs can provide some insight on what to expect in the future.  

“After high school I want to go to USF medical to specialize in trauma,” sophomore Haylie Woloszyn said. “I think dissecting is a fun and interesting activity that is the basis for what I should expect.” 

Dissecting not only builds team work, but solidifies the understanding of how the organ system works and the students’ understanding of it.  

“While we’re dissecting it’s interesting to see how everyone reacts with each other,” sophomore Noor Hammeed Akthar said. “We end up dividing up the tasks of who does what depending on who’s not grossed out with the cutting and who just wants to label all of the parts. This way we learn from each other.”