SEO/YES Celebrates 20 Successful Years with Largest Group Ever

students standing in BRB presenting posters on their research from SEO/YES

All eyes—including television cameras—were on the students who participated in the 2023 Student Enrichment Opportunity (SEO) and Youth Engaged in Science (YES) programs.

Eighty students from across Cleveland joined Case CCC to work in labs and on projects ranging from cancer health disparities to immunotherapies during their summer breaks. Of the 30 student participants who graduated in 2023, 100% are matriculating to university.

Each student presented their research from and was evaluated by a panel of three judges. Scores were tallied without consultation between assessors. Students received monetary awards in the following categories: SEO/YES Most Exceptional Scientific Poster Presentation, Mark Smith Prize for Outstanding Achievement in Science, SEO/YES Outstanding Scientific Poster Presentation, and Mark Smith Prize for Outstanding Scientific Progress.

Ese standing at podium talking about Dr. Berger's great mentorship during YES/SEO program

A highlight of the day was a motivational address given by Ese Omoijuanfo, a former SEO/YES participant who graduated from the University of Notre Dame and, after being accepted at 13 medical schools, chose Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. 

Gary Schwartz, MD, Case CCC Director, praised the students for their exceptional dedication to science and urged them to consider careers in research and medicine.

The SEO/YES program is supported by Case CCC through a grant from the National Cancer Institute. Led by Nathan Berger, MD, founding director of Case CCC and member of its Population and Cancer Prevention Program, is one of the longest-running education initiatives at Case CCC. This year's program was organized by PI J.T. Render.