Anatomy class expresses gratitude for body donors

Students in Dr. Pam Faber’s 400-level Cadaver Prosection class carried out a tradition on Thursday by expressing gratitude for the silent teaching partners who have given a rare and amazing gift to them. 

The students – Camryn Casto, Katie Emling, Katelynn Helminiak, Kirsten Kracht, Kailyn Kroll, Brynlee Vermillion, Michael Woody and Morgan Woycitzky – conducted the 10th annual Donor Appreciation Ceremony as the culminating event of their class. The ceremony is an expression of gratitude to those who selflessly donated their bodies through the Body Donation Program at The Ohio State University. Heidelberg has long benefitted from this partnership with OSU, which was originally shepherded by Pam years ago.

The students organized the ceremony that included personal testimonials, alumni testimonials from Bartt Colahan, Maddie Newby, Raylene Hammond and Courtney Temple, and reflections they titled “Quiet Voices in the Lab.” President Rob Huntington delivered opening remarks. 

As part of the ceremony, each of the students wrote a personal letter to the body donors, expressing their gratitude and explaining ways in which their gift of learning has challenged them and impacted their current and future learning. The students placed their letters into an urn, where they will forever remain between the students and the donors.

While anatomy curricula across the country vary greatly, Heidelberg is distinguished because of the ability for undergraduates to study using cadavers. The experiential learning opportunities the lab provides are excellent career preparation. For example, this year’s class members are planning careers as a cardiac perfusionist, a trauma surgeon, a physical therapist, a biomedical engineer, a pediatric surgeon and a physician assistant.

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