CAMM Junior Fellows


The Center for Applied Molecular Medicine (CAMM) and the Westside Cancer Center (WCC) have developed a unique program to foster scientific achievement for rising high school seniors interested in clinical or research oncology. We believe that passion, coupled to outstanding aptitude, are the hallmarks for success. This program attempts to foster scientific education by incorporating hands-on experimentation in a collaborative environment.

The application consists of an essay, a letter of recommendation, and a copy of the student’s transcripts. The essay should be used as a forum to convey the student’s passion for science/medicine. We will be accepting applications from February 1 through April 7, 2017. The program will begin on June 14th and requires the students to commit 6 hours each weekday until June 30th at the Health Science Campus of USC. A strong preference will be given to students in the 11th grade. Please contact Dr. Kian Kani ( for more information. Download Application PDF or complete the application online here.

Program Details

The CAMM Jr. Fellows are presented with one challenge – how to determine which drug is bested suited (most effective) for their mock patient. During this process, the Fellows will become familiar with one of the most important aspects of medicine which currently confronts clinical and research oncologists. Resolution of this challenge will require integration of science, mathematics, and technology. The endpoint is discussion of their findings with Dr. David Agus at the WCC. The unique aspects of this program are listed below:

  • Hands-on learning with state-of-the-art laboratory equipment on a University Campus
  • Integrates students from various socio-economic groups within S. California
  • Mentored by USC faculty and staff
  • Team based problem solving
  • Access to medical clinic
  • Required writing component
  • Guidance with college applications
  • Guidance during college/transition to graduate school


USC Center for Applied Molecular Medicine
2250 Alcazar Street, CSC 240
Los Angeles, CA 90033

Clinic Day
Norris Westside Cancer Center
9033 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 300
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

Course Outline (June 14 – June 30, 2017):

Week 1:
Homework (prior to start of week): Read Weinberg’s Hallmarks of Cancer: The next generation. Cell, March 2011.

  • Discuss Hallmarks of Cancer paper
  • Einstein’s challenge
  • Lab safety (what to touch and what not to)
  • Lab equipment (learn the tools of research)
  • USC biological safety class
  • Seminar with Dr. Agus
  • Pipetting challenge (accuracy vs. precision)

Homework: Describe personalized therapy options in colon, breast, lung, or leukemia patients. Why is this important? How is it different from systemic chemotherapy?

Week 2:
Work individually and in groups to solve the following case study. The CAMM has obtained samples from six colon cancer patients. The goal is to determine which patient would be treated with targeted therapeutics.

  • Scientific method
  • How to identify which assay to use
  • Pick a technique to determine the concentration of the six unknowns
    • Bradford assay
    • Lowery’s assay
  • Implement that assay
  • Determine controls
  • Data analysis (error, confidence, plot results in Excel)
  • Troubleshoot
  • Kian’s challenge


Homework: Writing a scientific manuscript. Begin working on Introduction, Methods, and Data.

Week 3:
The students will integrate their results from week 2 and learn two new analytical methods in order to determine which patient should be given targeted vs. systemic therapies. Once they identified the correct sample (protein) they will have to recommend a therapeutic and convey their results in a scientific report.

  • Gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE)
  • Immunoblot/Western blot
  • Proteomics (theory)
  • Clinic day – Dr. Agus, Dr. Gross, Nurses.
  • Submit results in a formal scientific report
  • Feedback and career discussion.

Junior Fellows Graduates

Jr. Fellow: Brandon
Year: 2016
High School: Loyola High
Currently Attending: Loyola High
Jr. Fellow: Ezra
Year: 2016
High School: Crossroads High
Currently Attending: Crossroads High
Jr. Fellow: Gwendalyn
Year: 2016
High School: North Hollywood High
Currently Attending: North Hollywood High
Jr. Fellow: Jacob
Year: 2016
High School: Wildwood
Currently Attending: Wildwood
Jr. Fellow: Madison
Year: 2016
High School: Santa Monica High
Currently Attending: Santa Monica High
Jr. Fellow: Megan
Year: 2016
High School: Windward
Currently Attending: Windward
Jr. Fellow: Anna
Year: 2015
High School: Smidt Tech. High
Currently Attending: University of California, Berkeley
Jr. Fellow: Avery
Year: 2015
High School: New Trier Township High (IL)
Currently Attending: Tulane University
Jr. Fellow: Daniel
Year: 2015
High School: Harvard-Westlake
Currently Attending: Bucknell University
Jr. Fellow: Kalli
Year: 2015
High School: Monrovia High
Currently Attending: Santa Clara University
Jr. Fellow: Kimberly
Year: 2015
High School: Windward High
Currently Attending: University of Pennsylvania
Jr. Fellow: Victoria
Year: 2015
High School: Arcadia High
Currently Attending: University of Southern California
Jr. Fellow: Geordan
Year: 2014
High School: New Community Jewish High
Currently Attending: New Community Jewish High
Jr. Fellow: Michael
Year: 2014
High School: Harvard-Westlake
Currently Attending: Harvard-Westlake
Jr. Fellow: Samantha
Year: 2014
High School: Wildwood
Currently Attending: T.B.D
Jr. Fellow: Tae
Year: 2014
High School: Windward High
Currently Attending: Stanford
Jr. Fellow: Yu-Shien
Year: 2014
High School: Marlborough
Currently Attending: UC Berkley
Jr. Fellow: Sean
Year: 2013
High School: Winward High
Currently Attending: Tufts University
Jr. Fellow: Sharon
Year: 2013
High School: MASS Magnet
Currently Attending: UC Santa Cruz
Jr. Fellow: Kayla
Year: 2013
High School: Wildwood
Currently Attending: Bucknell University
Jr. Fellow: Zita
Year: 2013
High School: Harvard Westlake
Currently Attending: Notre Dame
Jr. Fellow: Amanda
Year: 2013
High School: Palos Verdes High
Currently Attending: UCLA
Jr. Fellow: Lizette
Year: 2013
High School: University High
Currently Attending: UCLA
Jr. Fellow: Sophie
Year: 2013
High School: Marlborough
Currently Attending: USC
Jr. Fellow: Natali
Year: 2012
High School: St. Monica High
Currently Attending: Loyola Marymount University
Jr. Fellow: Kimberley
Year: 2012
High School: Garfield High
Currently Attending: UC Merced
Jr. Fellow: Christine
Year: 2011
High School: Menlo School
Currently Attending: Miami of Ohio
Jr. Fellow: Alex
Year: 2011
High School: Harvard-Westlake
Currently Attending: University of Michigan
Jr. Fellow: Paige
Year: 2011
High School: Santa Monica High
Currently Attending: University of Scotland
Jr. Fellow: Alyssa
Year: 2011
High School: LACES
Currently Attending: Santa Monica College
Jr. Fellow: Gabby
Year: 2010
High School: Shalhavet School
Currently Attending: BS/MD program Claremont/McKenna College