The Life Sciences Summer Institute (LSSI) introduces San Diego high school students and science teachers to our thriving life sciences industry. Recent LSSI participant and Helix Charter High School science teacher, Jeff Kepper, gives his take on the two-week experience.
Many Helix Charter High School teachers have partaken in LSSI before—some since the very first year! However, Jeff was a bit of a late boomer. After his colleagues raved about how much of a blast they had at LSSI, he knew he had to get in on the fun.
Even with 22 years of teaching experience under his belt, Jeff admits that he still had plenty to gain from the LSSI program. “The biggest thing I learned was how to refine some of my techniques, where I might have made errors before, I’ve found better ways to approach the labs,” he explains. Jeff also shares his appreciation for the teacher externships. He adds, “I like the opportunity this program provides for teachers to be reminded of what it takes, for students, to be more competitive in the workplace.” The LSSI externships place a huge emphasis on soft skills and the concept hat it’s not always what you know, but sometimes who you know.
Overall, while summertime may seem almost too precious for some teachers to give up, everyone who has been through the program has admitted that it has been a game-changer. Many teachers like Jeff appreciate the knowledge they’ve obtained about the life sciences industry and the equipment they were provided with for their own classrooms. Whether you’ve got 22 years of teaching experience or if you’re just starting out, the Life Science Summer Institute has something invaluable for everyone to gain.