Applied Studies: STEM Research Program

College Prep’s STEM program is for students interested in getting hands-on research experience in a broad array of STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). The course begins with a spring semester seminar (STEM Research Part I) that provides the foundational scientific knowledge and analytical skills needed for a summer internship. During discussion-based classes, students learn how to read primary scientific literature, analyze and critique raw data, and work as a productive member of a research team. The core of the program takes place during the summer, when students are matched with research mentors for full-time, six-week internships. In the fall, the program concludes with a semester-long seminar (STEM Research Part II) in which students prepare a poster about their summer research and design and deliver a formal scientific talk. Most placements are in labs at either UCSF or UC Berkeley.
Past STEM research topics include:
  • The engineering of proteins to enhance pharmaceutical drug discover
  • Analysis of microbial communities to enhance fuel projection from biomass
  • Optimization of vaccines against the N. meningitis bacterium
  • The role of vitamin D in cancer prevention and treatment
  • The design of microfluidic devices to be used in metastatic cancer cell detection
  • The investigation of cellular complexity using magnetotactic bacteria
  • Effects of COVID-19 on fertility and birth outcomes
  • Pathogen tracking, disease modeling, and contact tracing
  • The impact of climate change on human health and the development of adaptive health strategies.
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