A bacterial disease is threatening to become a world-wide epidemic.
Symptoms first begin with a dry, hacking cough, that quickly turns into a productive cough; high fever then develops and muscles become extremely sore. Coughing up blood comes next. Death results within 24 hours.
These are the symptoms of the imaginary pandemic that the 15 physical science scholars of the President's Academy at the Angus Chemical Company must develop a response plan for, and fast.
Thankfully the epidemic is made-up, but the skills and hands-on learning experience only a select few upcoming high school juniors and seniors acquire through the University of Louisiana at Monroe, President's Academy is a priceless experience.
The President's Academy is a five-day program during the week of July 8-13 that allows 50 scholars to gain knowledge of exclusive high-level careers and experiences in the fields of computer science, medical science and physical science.
Laura Beal, Ph.d., ULM department of chemistry, said the applicants have spanned all over the U.S. and the students are extremely bright.
“We are trying to model the process of chemical development with unprecedented access at Angus,” she said, of the academically motivated students and their opportunity to obtain hands-on experience at Angus Chemical Company.
Other students not in the physical science (chemical engineering) aspect of the five-day training, either go to CenturyLink for training in mass communications or LSU/EA Conway for medical experience.
At the end of the five days, scholars will present their plans to defeat the pandemic in groups - the medical science, physical science and mass communications groups becoming combined.
Scott Durand, production manager at Angus, led the group in the physical science aspect and allowed them the opportunity to ask questions before the students were safely suited up to see the company's crystal cooling process.
For more information on the program visit the website at www.ulm.edu/presidentsacademy.