The Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) Program was the original outreach program run by City of Hope for students in Duarte Unified School District. STEP has replaced SEPA as the outreach program for students, and these specific programs are no longer available. However, there are other programs being run by STEP for high school students, which are open to students from more districts.
Research Preparedness Boot Camp
In 2019, STEP offered a Research Preparedness Boot Camp for selected Underrepresented Minority students from Duarte High School, Gladstone High School, and Monrovia High School who were interested in applying to the Roberts Academy. During the “Boot Camp,” STEP team members introduced students to laboratory skills, gave them guidance on completing the Roberts Academy application, and gave them tips about writing a resume. With this program, STEP hoped to help Underrepresented Minority students apply to the Roberts Academy, the Hilton Science and Nutrition Summer Research Program, or any other summer research program of interest.
Sepa Summer Research Program
Rising juniors and seniors from Duarte High School were invited to apply for a summer biomedical research program during the summers of 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016. During this program students spent 8 weeks at City of Hope conducting novel research on DNA repair, and their work contributed to research being done in a laboratory at City of Hope. At the end of the summer students presented their findings to their families, community members and COH staff.
Sepa After-School Internship
From 2012-2016, participants in the Summer Research Program had the opportunity to apply to the SEPA After-School Internship. Through this program, high school students conducted research projects during an academic-year internship (one or two semesters) in a City of Hope laboratory. At the end of each semester, students presented their research to their mentors, other participating students and their mentors, and the SEPA team.
Outreach At Optimist Youth Homes And Family Services
From 2015-2017, the SEPA program partnered with Optimist Youth Homes and Family Services in Los Angeles, an organization that supports and services at-risk youth and their families, to offer science enrichment programming.
During each meeting, a new group of students were taught about a topic in science and participated in a hands-on experiment. Some examples of programming including learning about ELISA and conducting a mock experiment to test “patients” for HIV or learning about the use of microarrays to diagnose breast cancer and conducting a mock microarray to diagnose “patients.”