Biomed III students create projects as a culmination of their work throughout high school


Morgan Williams

Biomed classes combine science with medicine to uniquely teach students about an important field.

In continuing to progress as a school providing a wide array of classes, the Biomedical class was introduced three years ago as an elective. Current seniors Alexa Reynders, Ben Larson, Brandon Weatherly, Felisha Fox, Henry Koch, Quinn Ehlen, and Spencer Sweeney are the first students to take all three biomedical classes and experience the program as a whole.

To finalize the course, the students in BioMed III are now creating solutions for various medical purposes. Beginning last year, students have been researching their topics intensely. The amount of time these students have put into their topics thus far is incredible. They have been working in the classroom as well as outside the classroom. Some students have been working with engineers while others have been working with graduate students. “They have [never] done science like this before,” BioMed III teacher Kirsten Hoogenakker said.

Some students have paired up in order to share the workload as the projects address intense medical issues such as cancer and amputations. Alexa Reynders and Ben Larson are working together on developing a rapid response urine test to detect lung cancer. Henry Koch and Quinn Ehlen are partnering with Lifenabled to make a prosthetic to go under the knee as well as a resizable footshell that is lifelike while also being affordable. “The projects are very impressive because it takes a lot of connecting with professionals and figuring out your overall goal to address real world issues,” Henry Koch said.

Other students are taking a different approach and working alone or with outside assistance. Students Brandon Weatherly and Spencer Sweeney have chosen to take on their projects alone while Felisha Fox has been working with senior engineering student Mikey Pupel. Sweeney has created a sleep study in which students from other schools are given sleep schedules and tested for confidence, IQ, and more. “[I’m working on] a Synthesis of Energy Harvesting Technologies for extended battery life in powered Prosthetics,” Weatherly said

Fox has created a medical device for children with Juvenile Arthritis. Along with Pupel, they have made a prototype for the device that will make injections more comfortable for children. Currently, Fox has a patent for the device and plans to continue in advancing the awareness of her device. “The prototype is going to be important for pediatric patients because of the benefits it will have in terms of fear and pain of injections,” Fox said.

Only a semester in, the Biomedical program is looking to be a success with current BioMed III students paving the way. With bright ideas and intense work, these students are already stepping into the medical field and getting hands on experience that will benefit them for future plans.