The Young Epidemiology Scholars (YES) Competition for original student research is designed to inspire talented students to investigate the many behavioral, biological, environmental, and social factors that affect health and, based upon this knowledge, to identify ways to improve the health of the public. The YES Competition awards up to 120 college scholarships each year to high school juniors and seniors who conduct outstanding research projects that apply epidemiological methods of analysis to a health-related issue. Epidemiologists seek answers to why some people get sick and others don’t. In other words, epidemiology is the science of exploring patterns of disease, illness and injury within populations, with the goal of developing methods for prevention, control and treatment to improve health. The basic skills required by epidemiology – framing the right question, collecting relevant information and analyzing it to answer the question – are skills that will help students succeed in any area of future work.

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