Bradley Branson of Riverton conducts research in the UW College of Arts and Science Building. (UW Photo)

(Laramie, Wyo.) – Recently graduated Riverton High School students Bradley Branson and Virgil Morrison are taking part in an intensive research program at the University of Wyoming designed to promote interest in science careers.

The Summer Research Apprentice Program is a six-week, paid summer research program for students who have completed their sophomore year of high school. Current high school juniors and seniors, or recent high school graduates, such as the two Riverton students, also are eligible for the UW program.

Branson plans to attend Black Hills State University to major in education, and Morrison will be a Sheridan College freshman majoring in wildlife biology, with plans to add art as well.

Virgil Morrison from Riverton looks at a test sample in the University of Wyoming Department of Botany’s Aven Nelson Building. He is taking part in the six-week Summer Research Apprentice Program that helps promote interest in science careers. (UW Photo)

Virgil Morrison from Riverton looks at a test sample in the University of Wyoming Department of Botany’s Aven Nelson Building. He is taking part in the six-week Summer Research Apprentice Program that helps promote interest in science careers. (UW Photo)

SRAP began in 1985 to provide minorities, first-generation college (neither parent completed college), and female students the opportunity to gain a meaningful firsthand experience in science, mathematics, engineering or other related science research.

Branson is researching past fire history in the northeastern corner of Yellowstone National Park in the UW Department of Geography, while Morrison is in the Department of Botany studying mountain pine beetle kill.

“This program will help prepare me for college with a workload, with the research I have to do and the research papers I will have to write,” Branson says. “This program was something new that I never tried before and it sounded like an enjoyable experience for me when I first heard about it.”

“I’m really hoping that this program actually helps me get a job at Sheridan College working in one of the labs with a professor,” Morrison says. “When I was applying for this program, I was looking for work experience to get a feel for what college life will be like.”

SRAP students will present their research work in front of class members, family and invited guests during the program’s final day, Friday, July 18.

–Provided by UW News Service