Urban DNA Barcoding Project at ESC

Urban DNA Barcoding Project at ESC

The New York City Department of Education’s Environmental Study Center (ESC) is pleased to offer a unique summer opportunity for teachers and their students to learn the Urban Barcoding Project from leading experts through the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, DNA Learning Center.  Through an application process, four teachers will be selected to join us for two weeks (August 3-14) along with their team of four students.

During the two weeks, teachers and their student teams will kick off their yearlong research project by exploring the local environment, the importance of the ecosystem and the concept of DNA barcoding.  Teams will begin to understand the importance of species identification as it relates to this ecosystem.  Teams will complete field work to gather samples for analysis, and then in the lab, teams will learn lab protocols and procedures to extract the DNA from their samples.  Their extractions will be sent to an offsite lab for sequencing and bioinformatics analysis.  Once species identification has been established, participants will continue researching the ecosystem and their species to uncover the interdependence of species to support a healthy ecosystem.

Highlights for the summer include:

  • Teachers and their students will receive roundtrip transportation to ESC from Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center daily and students will receive roundtrip metro cards for daily transportation to-and-from their home.
  • Roundtrip transportation to Marine Park for species collection.
  • Access to state of the art scientific equipment for DNA extraction and analysis.
  • Per Session rate for teachers.
  • Access to DNA Subway software.
  • An opportunity to begin their research project alongside leading experts.
  • DNA equipment rental during the school year to facilitate additional research opportunities.
  • Guidance on how to make this institute into a scalable project within your school.
  • Exposure to molecular biology, molecular techniques and modern scientific work.
  • Opportunities to learn species collection protocols.
Dates and Times:
Monday-Friday, August 3 – August 14: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
7151 Avenue T
Brooklyn, NY 11234

How to Apply:

  1. Click the “Click Here to Apply” button to complete the application questions on the following screens.
  2. Click to download the principal letter of support and student forms.
  3. Have your principal complete the letter of support.
  4. Select students and have them complete the student application, parent/guardian consent form, and media release form.
  5. Mail the principal letter of support and student forms.  Must be postmarked by Friday, May 29, 2015 to:
Environmental Study Center
7151 Avenue T
Brooklyn, NY 11234
Open to NYC DOE high school science teachers and their students.

Email ESC@schools.nyc.gov with any questions.

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