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Outreach Opportunities and Events

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NCI Scientists in the Community seeks to benefit students and teachers in the greater Washington, D.C. area.  We also seek to help NCI participants gain additional skills in program management, teaching, mentoring, and leadership.  Volunteers are welcome to participate in a scheduled event or participate in an ongoing opportunity with flexible days and times.  Please email to sign up today!

Volunteers are responsible for signing up for the events as they occur, participating in any necessary meeting and/or training(s) prior to the event, and arriving in a timely manner. For events that occur during work hours, please talk to your supervisor and make sure you have their full support before attending.

If you are running late or need to cancel attendance at an event, please contact the program coordinator as soon as possible. Repeated tardiness or cancellations will result in termination from the program.

To stay informed about upcoming volunteer opportunities and events, subscribe to our listserv.

Upcoming Events

Please check back for the 2020-2021 school year!

Past Events

Lunch and Learn: Wheaton HS (February 13, 2020)

Kimberly Meza is an iCURE postbaccalaureate fellow at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda. A first generation Mexican-American, she grew up in Central Florida and went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts from Barnard College of Columbia University in New York City where she majored in biology. Her current research at the NCI focuses on investigating the normal development of the mammary gland and the molecular basis of breast cancer.

New Carrolton, MD (February 20, 2020)

The Patriots Technology Training Center is looking for volunteers to serve as a team mentor, score keepers, or competition judges for its 10th Annual Biomedical Competition and Banquet Dinner.  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Theresa at or 240-534-9418.

Lunch and Learn: Wheaton HS (November 20, 2019)

Dr. Anshika Jain is  a postdoctoral fellow at NIH’s National Institute of Child Health and Development since 2015.  Dr. Jain’s research focuses on an infant disease called Multiple Mitochondrial Dysfunction Syndrome (MMDS). Specifically, she’s investigating how iron influences the ability of the mitochondria to make ATP in newborns who develop MMDS to understand ways to prevent the disease.

Nation’s Capital Girl Scout Expo: Dulles Expo Center (November 2, 2019)

Volunteers assisted with running booths at the Expo.  The theme this year was “How animal models are used in research” and provided an introduction to histology and cell biology.

Lunch and Learn: Wheaton HS (October 17, 2019)

Dr. Jarrett A. Johnson is a current Cancer Prevention Fellow in the Genomic Epidemiology Branch (GEB) of the Epidemiology and Genomics Research Program (EGRP) at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Johnson is currently working with other scientists in his branch to examine the psychosocial and sociocultural factors related to prostate cancer outcomes in men of African descent across the continuum of care.

6th  Annual Science Day (October 10, 2019)

Demonstrate how scientists treat cancer with middle and high school students from 11am – 2pm in Natcher.  Through this hands-on-activity, students will learn that if cancer cells are not removed completely during testing, a tumor may grow exponentially and become more challenging to eliminate. If you would like to participate, please contact Chanelle at

Science Communication Workshop: Poolesville High School (September 26, 2019)

Held an open Q&A session with the senior classes to assist them in writing their scientific papers and help them prepare for research competitions.

Journal Club: Poolesville School (September 10, 2019)

A demonstration of both the journal club leader and discussant with the class.  The article for session was “Specific transcription factors distinguish umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells from fibroblasts.”

Journal Club: Poolesville High School (September 3, 2019)

A presentation introducing the concept of a Journal Club is and why it is important.  Provide background information and high school journals for students to use as a reference.

Ongoing Opportunities

These opportunities are ongoing with flexible days and times. If you are interested in participating, contact us.

Curriculum Development: Learning Undefeated Activities

Learning Undefeated curriculum includes laboratory activities appropriate for a variety of classes ranging from basic biology and chemistry to AP biology and environmental science. All activities are focused on problem-based learning with real-world applications that align with Common Core State Standards (CCSS), Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), and Maryland Science Content Standards. Activities include common bioscience techniques such as DNA extraction and agarose gel electrophoresis, and relevant themes such as alternative fuels, bioengineering, and crime scene investigation.

Lunch and Learn Seminar Series: Wheaton High School

A "lunch and learn" seminar is an opportunity to share your research and your career path with students during lunch. There is no requirement for a specific background, but you will get to share the details of how you arrived at your current position. You will have 30-40 minutes to discuss when/how you decided to become a scientist, your path to NIH, as well as any advice you may have for a high school student interested in becoming a scientist. For this opportunity, the timing will be dependent on your schedule and you are responsible for coordinating with Wheaton after the initial sign-up.

Journal Club: Poolesville High School

A journal club was developed for the juniors at Poolesville High School.  Although students will be meeting on the weekly basis, NCI-SC will check-in with the students on a monthly basis (one Friday a month) to manage the progress of the students.

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