Victoria Mouras, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech, discusses her career as a female in the Army and in Civil Engineering, including advice for young women following her same path.
A high school class of sophomores and juniors at St. Catherine’s School, an age 3 through 12th grade all-girls school in Richmond, Va., took part in a mock crime scene as a part of a week-long program called X-Term: an experiential learning program in coordination with St. Christopher’s School to enhance understanding of new material. They had to solve a “murder” by using evidence they collected at the crime scene as well as “suspect” interviews.
This term’s theme was forensics, and the students learned how to process a crime scene which includes identifying the parts of the skeleton, dusting for fingerprints, testing dirt samples, analyzing blood spatter and testing for poison. The students, broken up into two groups, went through the entire forensic process for the mock crime scene, and each member of the group had a specific job that mimics a real crime scene.
Their teachers, Jennifer Harper and Jeanette Adkins, gave the students a list of suspects and their fingerprints. The group members interviewed the suspects based on evidence collected. While neither group identified the correct “perpetrator,” their processed evidence and interviews pointed to two different suspects with two different motives: The need for money for a trip to London and having the same hair color which was found on the crime scene. The “murderer” was later identified as Dr. Ryan Warren, based on fingerprints and his shoe print.