With the future of Science and Technology evolving at a very high rate, 14 students from the VCE Units 3 & 4 Biology cohort were selected to go to a convention held by the Gene Technology Access Centre (GTAC) titled “The Guardians Within, How the body fights back” on Thursday 27 April. It was held to commemorate The International Immunology Day, a day on Saturday 29 April that celebrates the advance of the science of immunology and the scientists who helped improve our lives by providing us with better and more robust healthcare. 


This convention began with a seminar with Professor Nicola Harris from Monash University discussing the different parts to our immune system and how all these parts work together to protect us from the millions of different pathogens that surround us. In this seminar, Prof Harris also discussed how one of the main reasons that we as a species survived other homosapiens was because of our much more resilient immune system. 

Following this riveting seminar, we engaged in conversations with current Masters and PhD students as well as scientists who worked in immunology about the possibilities of immunology as a career. As well as the wider possibilities that are present within the field of Biology such as biotechnology and microbiology. 

As great as these sessions were, the highlight of this event was a practical demonstration of the possibilities of immunology, where we used high precision tools to conduct an experiment, where we identified in which test tube there was a bacterial pneumonia present. 


This practical exploration of some of the possibilities within the field of immunology broadened our view of what the field of Biology has in store for us, as well as the rapidly advancing nature of the practice of immunology. We thank GTAC for having us during the day, as well as all the scientists who volunteered their time to inspire us in the field of immunology. 

Shuban Balamurugan
Shuban Balamurugan

Shuban Balamurugan

Year 12 Student