Que pasa guys!
In my last blog I mentioned that I was partaking in some lab work experience with the university this summer so I thought I would shed a little more insight in to what I am currently doing there and hopefully, entice you to ask around for work experience as well.
So I approached one of my lecturers earlier in the year for some general tips and advice on what I can do to get in to microbiology and wrote a blog about my change of decision in what I wanted to do, called ‘A Micro Manoeuvre’ – hey no one said I was good at blog titles ok? Anyway, the offer came to help out for 3 weeks over the summer and here I am! Experiencing what it is like to be a “lab geek”.
The work experience is taking place in the microbiology lab at uni and I am enjoying it thoroughly! In the past two weeks we have done so much already! There is myself and one other student helping the lecturer out and a couple of third year project students, so it is a nice small group and a very personal, friendly environment.
In the first week we went about basic techniques from making different agar plates and using aseptic techniques to streak the plates. We documented all of the bacterial species grown and stored in the lab and looked up what conditions each species needed to grow, i.e. what type of growth media and what temperatures.
We then went about streaking up each species on the relevant plate to be transferred to glycerol stock tubes to be frozen at -80°C to prolong the life of the specimens available at the lab – we got to use liquid nitrogen; awesome!
Next we carried out “dry-runs” of numerous experiments carried out across the biological science degrees taught at the university. We have carried out environmental swabs of the labs to see what, if any, bacteria grow – considering the lab is a fairly clean environment that was a challenge, it was left to the imagination of where to obtain swabs from and to ensure that nothing did grow on the clean surfaces.