AKRON, OH (WOIO) - A first-year program in Akron is having a big impact on six high school students. The program is called BRAIN which stands for Biostatistics and Research Awareness Initiatives Network.
Biostatistics is the study of data in health care.
The goal is to expose minority high students to the medical field to get them access and interested in a possible career.
The woman behind the program, Lillian Prince, is a biostatistician at Akron Children's Hospital.
Prince applied for and won a $5,000 grant to take six minority students and get them interested in the medical field of biostatistics.
"Out in the field I saw very few African Americans period. It's mostly Asian dominated," says Prince.
So she went to her alma mater, Buchtel High School and picked these six young men to come in and learn from doctors and experts in the field of biostatistics.
She then narrowed the study to eye conditions.
"I wanted to have something where we could highlight males, black males. Not just black males but Latino males, Native American males, minority males to give them exposure to the science field," says Prince.
As a part of the program, this group is headed to Kenya on Friday for a week to volunteer in an eye clinic.
It is a trip that will impact these young men and their futures.
"What are you expecting?" 19 Action News Reporter Dan DeRoos asked Buchtel Senior Oshae Foster.
"All I know is we're going to go over and we're going to be like in the fields with the children and working with some adults doing eyes, like examining their eyes," said Forster.
"It's driven me more towards biostatistics. Open my eyes basically to a larger field of medicine and medical studies," explained fellow Senior Brandon Foster.
The group is looking for donations, both monetary and medical to take on their trip.
The grant was a one-time, one-year grant so Prince is also looking for money to continue the program into next year.
CLICK HERE if you would like to help.