PETA Sends Plush Pig to Indianapolis STEM Education Exec

Group Pushes ‘Project Lead The Way’ to Cut Out Animal Dissection

For Immediate Release:
December 1, 2020

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382


Today, PETA sent an adorable plush pig to Vince Bertram, president and CEO of Indianapolis-based STEM curriculum company Project Lead The Way, along with a letter urging him to remove dissection of fetal pigs and various animal organs from the company’s Biomedical Science and Gateway programs.

The delivery follows appeals from more than 11,000 PETA supporters who have urged Project Lead The Way to end dissection using piglets cut from their mothers’ bodies and sheep brains, cow eyes, sheep hearts, and pig kidneys from companies that buy body parts from filthy slaughterhouses.

“Medical schools stopped cutting up dead animals and switched to innovative teaching tools years ago,” says PETA Senior Director of Youth Programs Marta Holmberg. “PETA is asking Project Lead The Way to prepare students for the medical profession by joining the 21st century and embracing digital dissection.”

Studies reveal that while dissection has been shown to foster callousness toward animals and turn students off from careers in science, students who use modern, animal-free dissection methods—such as eMind, which offers in-depth anatomy studies of frogs, pigs, cats, and more—perform better in learning assessments.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

PETA’s letter to Bertram follows.

December 1, 2020

Vince Bertram, Ed.D.

President and CEO

Project Lead The Way, Inc.

Dear Dr. Bertram:

I hope you are well. We applaud Project Lead The Way’s efforts to guide the next generation of young minds with modern and engaging activity-based learning pathways, some of which are the very methods that we recommend for humane science education. We’re sending you this plush piglet as we’re rooting for you to remove animal dissection from the Biomedical Science and Gateway programs. There are excellent reasons to do so.

The source of the pig kidneys, sheep brains and hearts, and cow eyes used in your programs are filthy slaughterhouses—and these breeding grounds for disease are places that no child would ever wish to visit. Unlike the curious and playful pigs PETA has saved and sent to sanctuaries—where children visit them and learn so much about their nature and interests—piglets used for dissection are cut from their mothers’ bodies.

I’m sure you know that no medical school requires animal dissection anymore. They now use only state-of-the-art, innovative teaching tools. If this program is to help prepare young people for the medical profession, it must feature 21st century techniques.

We hope you will act swiftly to remove animal cadavers and organs from PLTW’s Gateway and Biomedical Science programs.

Very truly yours,

Ingrid E. Newkirk


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