Life Sciences Outing

On Tuesday 29th April, the Grade 12 Life Sciences students accompanied by the Grade 12 Dance Study girls went on an outing to the Stellenbosch Medical Museum  at the Stellenbosch University Tygerberg Campus. For many of the girls, this was their last outing in High School and it certainly went out with a bang. The scene of the Hospital and the Museum was like walking through Seattle Grace Hospital in the series “Greys Anatomy”, everything disinfected and clean, white walls and people walking around in white coats. Many of the girls feared seeing the dissected bodies, known as cadavers by the medical students, but overcame these fears. A few girls had to step out of the dissecting room because the smell was very overwhelming. The doctors were patient, answering questions after question and we were allowed to touch the bodies and organs. Many of us were shocked at how much the skin feels exactly like the leather of our schools. Needless to say, everybody washed their hands very thoroughly before leaving the dissecting room to go to the Museum.

The Medical Museum is one of four in the world to have such a wide range of medical exhibitions and was outstanding. It consists of three floors filled with different body parts, medical mysteries and miracles. We were able to see the size of a human foetus from the early stages of pregnancy to the final stages right before birth and things that can go wrong in pregnancies, such as Cyclops babies.  We were also shown the side effects of smoking, drinking and drugs on the human body and all the muscles from just under the skin layer to the bone.

It was a privilege to have visited and to have met passionate, young medical students. It is certain that many more girls are interested in going into the medical field, this outing really changed our perspectives on what medicine involves and the complexities of the human body. Thank you to the teachers who organised the outing and accompanied us on the day and a huge thank you to Stellenbosch University for allowing us to visit the Medical Campus and the students who took us the through the day. It was great day and appreciated by all those who visited.

Sarah Mesham and Kristen van Beek