Encouraging Research among Young Minds

Samantha (centre) and fellow camp participants reading the brain book

Samantha (centre) and fellow camp participants reading the brain book

From 10 to 15 June 2012, 150 youths from the ASEAN countries, India and China and South Korea convened in Singapore for the inaugural STEP-NUS Sunburst Brain Camp. Organised by the Singapore Technologies Endowment Programme (STEP) and the National University of Singapore (NUS), the camp gave youths the opportunity to interact with like-minded peers as well as professors from the NUS.

Through interactive talks and hands-on workshops, students aged 16 to 18 were acquainted with current research methods, such as Electroencephalography (EEG) and the use of the C. Elegans, a worm, in laboratory experiments.

The camp also marked the launch of the Brain Book, which describes how the brain works and how its dysfunction can lead to neurological diseases. Targeted at high school students, the book was co-written by students from NUS High School of Mathematics and Science.

Samantha Yong, a camp participant and aspiring clinical researcher, worked with her sister on a chapter of the Brain Book. “I chose to write the chapter on the Brain Bank because I did not know much about it. After researching more about the topic, we realised the importance of a brain bank in advancing research on the brain.”