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Duarte Unified lands science grant with City of Hope

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A small San Gabriel Valley school district announced Wednesday that it’s won a big federal grant to nurture a new generation of scientists.

A small San Gabriel Valley school district announced Wednesday that it’s won a big federal grant to nurture a new generation of scientists.

The Duarte Unified School District and the cancer hospital City of Hope will use a nearly $1.5 million grant over five years to place a researcher in front of every district student.

The National Institutes of Health grant starts this summer with 20 Duarte high school juniors and seniors, says cancer researcher Susan Kane.

"Students will come to City of Hope, work in our teaching lab, but they’ll be doing real science," Kane explains. "We’ll have them work on a genetics screening project, generating brand new data, they’ll learn how to work in a lab, how to set up experiments, how to design experiments, how to conduct the experiments, how to interpret their data."

Kane says the earliest students learn about careers in the life sciences, the more likely kids are to choose those professions. The medical research and treatment field need ethnic diversity, Kane says - and that’s a big reason City of Hope partnered with 3,800-student Duarte Unified. That district’s enrollment is nearly 3/4 Latino.

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