Using the Jefferson Parish Coroner’s Morgue as a living classroom, 19 DHS students and their anatomy teacher, Ms. Anjel Guitroz, gather around a table with various organs to examine. With goosebumps raised, they look at and discuss the differences between healthy and diseased organs.
The students toured the parish coroner’s facility in March. During the presentation, they heard from a crime scene investigator, forensic pathologists and forensic toxicologists and learned about the different aspects of an autopsy.
The students also examined real organs affected by alcohol poisoning, drug overdose and heart disease. They learned about how abusing substances can increase the risk of diseases and cancer, and saw the effects firsthand on the organs.
“It is important for the students to be exposed to the damage these diseases can do to the human body, especially with the current drug epidemic,” said Ms. Guitroz. “These are real and practical situations, and we need to understand the negative effects of certain lifestyles.”
Never had these DHS students imagined that they would be up close and personal with slices of brains, kidneys, and hearts in a chilly, hair-raising morgue. “It was exciting and different because we weren’t just sitting down and taking notes,” said senior Katherine Triche. “Instead, we took the information learned in class, applied it to what was right in front of us and saw how much we truly knew about the human body.”
– Lauren Nguyen