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Has the dissections unit been helpful?

Sophomores have mixed feelings about the practicality of cutting open a rat

By Anthony Nguyen

Rat dissection provides insight on the function of an organism.
Photo by: Chloe Cho

The thought of cutting open a dead animal is disgusting, but the learning behind this unit is critical for students. Though many students find the dissection unit helpful, some say otherwise.

Sophomore Joseph Pacini thought that the dissections unit was a beneficial experience.

“I think the dissection[s were] worth all the time we spend working up to it and during it,” said Pacini. “It comes to show how we can apply our knowledge to a real world situation and do it well.”

Although the dissections were time consuming, he believes that it has helped everyone.

“Knowing what goes into a dissection takes a lot of time and work,” said Pacini, “and I think that although it was challenging, we needed the challenge to prepare us for possible future endeavors.”

Pacini thinks that the dissections unit is essential to those looking for an engineering career.

“Knowing how somethings works and understanding what happens in a machine is crucial to [being] an engineer,” said Pacini.

Pacini would like to pursue a job in the engineering field and because of this he has grown to appreciate this experience.

“I think this unit has shown me how decisive dissections are,” said Pacini, “not just in the field of natural sciences, but in engineering sciences as well.”

Although the dissections unit is important, Pacini also feels pressured during the process.

“Remembering to take a picture of everything, documenting it, and making the correct incision is very important to our success in the lab report,” said Pacini, “and sometimes it is very difficult to do this with just another partner.”

Carson Klein, a sophomore, personally, doesn’t find the dissections practical because it has no major connection to his want career.

“I would say that the dissection unit hasn’t really done much for me,” said Klein. “Primarily because it is irrelevant to my planned career path as a software developer.”

Besides it just being irrelevant to his field, it has actually turned him away from any fields with dissections.

“If anything, it has made me less interested in the field as a potential career path,” said Klein.

Although dissections won’t help him with his career in the future, Klein still finds the dissections a valuable lesson.

“This unit has provided me with my first ever chance to do a dissection. Because of this, the first dissection was, understandably, somewhat intimidating,” said Klein. “However, the initial exposure has given me a better perspective of the subject, and that by itself makes the experience worth it.”

Caroline Tran, a junior, was not able to do dissections during her sophomore year but thinks that it would be a great opportunity to help students widen their view of possible careers.

“As a high schooler, this would probably be the only time they would be able to experience this type of exposure to the workforce before actually choosing a specific major or career path later after high school,” said Tran. “I think it would be a fun way to not only teach the students about anatomy but to also help them figure out what types of work they enjoy doing.”

Tran believes that dissections would allow students to find out what they are comfortable doing and what they are passionate about.

“I feel like dissections unit would help them dip their toes into an occupation that might surprisingly interest them,” said Tran. “These dissections might help students figure out if they are comfortable cutting into humans as surgeons or they would rather do something that doesn’t make them feel queasy.”

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