2018 Biomedical Career Advancement Program
This summer, approximately 60 high school students from Detroit Public Schools worked alongside clinical and research faculty from Wayne State University School of Medicine (WSU-SOM) to explore clinical, health policy, or basic science research as part of the Biomedical Career Advancement Program (BCAP). BCAP, a six-week paid internship, is a collaborative program between Wayne State University School of Medicine (WSUSOM), Michigan Area Health Education Center (MI-AHEC), Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority (DWMHA), and Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD). DWMHA provided $185,000 to expand BCAP for DPSCD students and also provided training to the students.
BCAP was established in 2014 by Jennell White, PhD. Dr. White, a newly appointed Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology at WSU-SOM, is dedicated to exposing youth to careers in health science. BCAP students engaged in research Monday-Thursday and on Fridays, students participated in BCAP-hosted laboratory training and informational sessions with a focus on the college admission process, careers in health science, and opportunities to build professional networks with peers and Wayne State University faculty and staff.
"Minority Americans are severely underrepresented in scientific and health fields at every level, from the professional work force - physicians, dentists, research scientists - through all levels of the educational system," said Dr. White. "I developed the BCAP curriculum to combat this underrepresentation by improving science education of minority youths at the early stages of the educational process and by increasing available opportunities to ignite their passion for the sciences."
Students showcased their research findings during BCAP's closing ceremony, August 3, 2018 at WSU-SOM. The oral research presentation allowed students to communicate the importance of their research, learn how to clearly state their findings and analyze those findings, and prompt others to ask questions and give valuable feedback.