Human Anatomy at Colby

Entries Tagged as 'Body Worlds Vital'

Breanna Davis: My January Experience

February 14th, 2014 · Comments Off on Breanna Davis: My January Experience

Breanna Davis: 2/14/14


This Jan Plan, 2014, I was given the opportunity to take an Introduction to Anatomy and Physiology class with Dr. Thom Klepach. I have always loved Anatomy and Physiology and I hope to be a medical doctor some day, so it seemed necessary to take a class about the human body in College. Going in to the class, I had expected that I would be in class for around 3 hours, 4 days a week. I also expected that I would do really well on the quizzes and tests because I did very well in Anatomy and Physiology in High School. However, I did not expect what actually happened, which was to be pushed to my limits, learn about myself when under stress, and learn how to present a case-study.

I am a student-athlete at Colby and a student-worker. This allows for less time in my day that can be spent freely as I choose. I am a sophomore, so I have learned how to keep a healthy lifestyle and balance all my commitments in the past year. However, this January was something I haven’t quite experienced yet. In the Anatomy and Physiology class at Colby, I learned so much more than the names of the body and how the systems of the body work. I learned how to communicate with my boss, my coach, and my teacher in ways I haven’t yet done.

Our hockey schedule switches away games to home games each year. Last year, we had only one weekend away during Jan Plan, Connecticut College. This year, of the four JanPlan weekends, we had three away games, Trinity, Amherst, and Williams. We didn’t get back before 12 on any of those Saturdays because it was snowing every night when we came back. The one weekend home was our Alumni Weekend, which ended up being just as time consuming as an away trip. Some people would say, “Why put yourself through that?” My answer would be because we love our team and the sport. We aren’t quite ready to give up competing at a high level.

Having multiple commitments makes it hard to prevent them from ever overlapping. If you miss practice, you won’t get as much playing time. If you miss school, your grade will go down. If you miss work, you don’t make money. I managed to only miss work 3 times and practice once because of class. I realized that being a student-athlete may make things more complicated and may take away from the classroom, but I realized in this class that learning how to balance many commitments and keep my stress levels down will be a very important skill in Medical School.

Because I found a balance, I was able to go on the trip to Boston to see the Body World Museum, take a tour of MaineGeneral by 3rd year Medical Students, and present a case on Strokes in young adults to Doctors. With just those field trips, I would have felt like my Month of January was a success. For me, those trips helped me learn more about Medical School, anatomy, and presenting to a crowd than sitting in a lecture could. The lecture is necessary to get knowledge, but I believe the real learning is done by trying, practicing, touching, and taking what is learned in lecture to real life situations. The reason why I would recommend this class to anyone, even though it did put me in over my head, is because of the field trips and projects we did. This class did a great job teaching beyond the classroom.

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My coach came to our group’s presentation and learned about Ischemic Strokes in Young Adults. The other day when she sent me an article about a professional hockey player, age 28, that had a recent stroke, I realized that my grand rounds talk had made a difference. Our group’s main focus was to raise awareness of strokes in young adults because they have increased in recent years. In the article, the hockey player happened to say almost the exact same thing. He listed symptoms, as we did, and said to get checked immediately instead of trying to stick it out. I felt accomplished that I made my coach aware enough to notice the news. It was fascinating to see that something I had created in “class” could be so important and relevant to today.

As a whole, the class affected me in a positive way and taught me important knowledge, taught me useful life skills, and it allowed me to create connections with people I may work with in the future.


Tags: Body Worlds Vital · Grand Rounds · Maine General

Laurel Whitney: Body Worlds Vital

February 14th, 2014 · Comments Off on Laurel Whitney: Body Worlds Vital



LW_BWV1  IMG_2889

On Monday January 27th our class took a trip to Boston to see the Body World’s Vital exhibit at Faneuil Hall Market Place (Body Worlds Vital Exhibit). This exhibit was a great chance to see the anatomy we have learned throughout the month in action. It was a great way to practice and review all the information we have learned about the human body. Being able to see real muscles on real bodies was very powerful and cemented my understanding of the material we had learned in lecture and lab. Being able to see the bodies in real life was amazing!

Pictures I took at the exhibit:


Tags: Body Worlds Vital

Blake McCartney: Body Worlds Vital

February 14th, 2014 · Comments Off on Blake McCartney: Body Worlds Vital

Blake McCartney


I had heard about Body Worlds a while ago, but I had forgotten about it until I found out we were going to see it in this class. I was not really prepared for what it turned out to be – I had only heard vague descriptions. The plastination itself wasn’t disturbing; it was actually pretty hard to believe these were real human bodies! I read the pamphlet on plastination they provided, it’s an interesting process (Body Worlds plastination process).

I just think that the way these bodies were displayed was kind of troubling. All of the bodies were shown doing various activities, or their muscles were arranged in designs. I found one display of a man with his muscles completely splayed out and a top hat on particularly disturbing.  In past years there been debate over the sexist or “heteronormal” poses of the bodies.  However, I thought they did a pretty good job with changing that; I remember seeing a male dancer and gymnast.


The point of the exhibit honestly is not clear to me for reading the Body Worlds website and from the exhibit.  The website states, “the exhibition shows the body through cautionary displays about distress and disease, and inspirational insights about the virtuosity and resilience of the human body”.  I only recall a couple displays about disease – most of them were just poses.

There is definitely supposed to be educational value, but I was disappointed by the amount of anatomical labeling.  I found that the descriptions were pretty vague and not very helpful in figuring out what I was looking at.  The exhibit wasn’t as educational as I had hoped.  For someone who knows what they are looking at the exhibit is informative and interesting, but for the average person – who would be the majority of people who see this exhibit – wouldn’t know what they were looking at.  Before this class I would have just seen it as a freak show.  Now I can identify a lot of parts, but I’m not sure if that’s the message people are receiving from Body Worlds exhibit.

There is a lot of controversy over whether or not informed consent was actually given from the people who donated these bodies.  From the research I did it seems that these people do in fact give informed consent to use their bodies for plastination, although, I’m still a little skeptical.  I feel people should be able to do whatever they want with their body after they die and that these people should have that right.

Personally, I would never subject myself to this; it just seems demeaning to have people pay a company to gawk at you posed in some strange position.  Also, you get no compensation for donating your body – you actua

Tags: Body Worlds Vital