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What is OPTIMUS?

OPTIMUS (Outreach Program To Inspire Minority and Underrepresented Students) is an educational 6-week cancer research internship for high school students in San Diego.

Coronavirus Pandemic

In previous years, students would come up to Moores Cancer Center at UC San Diego, work in real cancer research labs, spend time shadowing doctors in clinic, and learn about medicine, cancer, and research. Unfortunately, with COVID-19, we cannot bring students onto campus. However, we are hosting a virtual program in the summer of 2021.


OPTIMUS 2021 will consist of a part time program a few afternoons a week, extending from July 5th, through August 13th. The program will be hosted by medical students from our School of Medicine and undergraduate students from UC San Diego. The virtual program will include interactive education sessions that focus on medicine, cancer, research, as well as information on college admissions and career guidance. Follow this link for information about the application process. Below you'll find a brief video describing the program.

OPTIMUS on the News!

We were featured on the news back in 2019, check it out below!


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