A Near-Death Experience

Mrs. Knott Takes her students on a fascinating forensics field trip!

December 12, 2018

Mrs. Samya Knott is the Forensics teacher here at San Dimas High School. Her class consists of learning about crime scene investigation, criminal psychology, and other forensic sciences. Every year, she gathers a select group of students to take with her on a field trip to the Southern California University of Health Sciences, here they receive hands-on learning experience and are able to interact with a real dead body. The purpose for this trip is to learn more about the body’s internal structures as well as finding out clues and important factors that may lead to determining scenarios such as time of death, or identifying criminals.

Professors are present demonstrating dissection procedures, as well as teaching lessons about premature fetuses, and the human nervous system. Knott believes this is a once in a lifetime experience. Students were “dying” to get right into the dissections and lectures.

“I remember preparing myself for the worst because I didn’t really know how I was gonna react, but once my group got to the station with the cadaver, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I had expected. The smell was honestly the only thing that kind of bothered me,” said Senior Antonio Flores.

“The ‘body farm’ was cool. It was all fun and games until we got there and realized how real it is. But once we got into checking the body out and learning about all the different organs, it turned out to be really cool and interesting.” said Senior Carter Flores.

Junior Jacob Nichols also commented on his experience, “The trip really allowed me to learn more about the ins and outs of the human body.” Nichols states “It was a great and interesting experience that I’ll never forget.”

“My favorite thing was examining the entire dead human body! They also had premature fetal babies that were stored in jars. It sounds as morally upsetting as it is, but when you put that aside, you really begin to enjoy the beauty of human life.” says Junior Maya Dabney.

Forensics teacher Mrs. Knott comments on the importance of the trip, “I’m so glad I have the privilege to take these students every year. It really is a once in a lifetime experience to be able to have an up close and personal encounter with a real corpse at such a wonderful facility where you will learn things that you will take away and look back on your high school career.”

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