The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) and Helios Education Foundation today announced the formation of a new biomedical studies program designed specifically for high school students to elevate their understanding of bioscience and precision medicine.
TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy will launch in summer 2018, offering 20 Arizona high school students the opportunity to spend two weeks with TGen’s world-class scientists, learning advanced scientific and professional skills. Each graduate of the program will receive a $1,000 scholarship.
The program builds on the success of Helios Scholars at TGen, an eight-week paid internship for 45 undergraduate and graduate college students each summer, training the next generation of Arizona bioscience researchers and physicians. Over the past 11 summers, 464 students have graduated from this program, which previously was open to a few exceptional high school students.
“Thanks to the generosity and partnership of Helios Education Foundation, high school students interested in the biosciences now have a program specifically tailored to expose them to a full array of biomedical topics and career possibilities, critical thinking skills, and leadership development opportunities,” said Julie Euber, TGen Manager of Education and Outreach. “TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy creates greater opportunity for younger students to build on their interests and strengths.”
Helios Scholars at TGen generates nearly 500 applicants annually, and Euber expects that the TGen Biosciences Leadership Academy will be as competitive.
“After witnessing the accomplishments of previous TGen interns, we are excited to add a new layer of opportunity for high school students to prepare for success in college and career,” said Paul J. Luna, President and CEO, Helios Education Foundation. “TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy will be a creative and challenging way for these younger students to advance to a higher academic level.”
TGen scientists and staff will share research expertise and expose students to technical skills, lab shadowing, bioethics, experimental design, and the translational process of quickly moving laboratory discoveries into new therapeutics to benefit patients with neurological disorders, infectious diseases and many types of cancer.
As with TGen’s internship programs, those selected for TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy will participate in professional development programs, including science communication skills, public speaking, interdisciplinary and collaborative workplace skills, and networking.
And, like TGen’s Helios Scholar program, it is designed to increase access to academic experiences for underrepresented populations, demonstrate TGen’s and Helios’ leadership in innovative bioscience education, and enable graduates to become peer models who can inspire other students to achieve.
The inaugural class of TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy runs from June 18-29, 2018. Applications open Jan. 3, and close Feb. 9.
Applicants must be 16 by the time the program starts, and about to enter their junior or senior year of high school at a school in Arizona. Only one student will be selected each summer from any one high school.