San Diego Unified partners with BioLabs to give students an inside look at biotech careers

Posted: Friday, December 1st 2017

The county and city have deployed hand-washing stations, tents and nurses armed with vaccines to stop the spread of hepatitis A in San Diego. Now, Clairemont High School students are putting their heads together to develop new ways to counter the virus.

The exercise is part of a San Diego Unified effort to connect students to the region’s biotech sector.

This week, juniors in the school’s health and business academies are visiting BioLabs in La Jolla, a communal space where biotech entrepreneurs work on launching their companies. They are getting facetime with these professionals and first-hand experience pitching ideas to actual investors for feedback.

But not just any idea. Students heard from public health officials about the region’s hepatitis A outbreak that has killed 20 and sickened 553. They were given an hour to develop strategies to address the problem.

Annette Moreno and her teammates proposed handing out packaged meals along with vaccines to limit transmission through contaminated food. San Diego officials have warned charity groups that informal food handouts to the homeless could help spread the virus; El Cajon has outlawed the practice.



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