Youth Membership Scheme

Centre of the Cell’s Youth Membership Scheme (YMS) is open to all young people aged 14 – 19. Through the YMS we offer a range of activities and opportunities for young people interested in a career in science and healthcare. All activities are completely free of charge.

To keep in touch and hear about our latest events and opportunities for Youth Members, join the Youth Membership Scheme by completing an online form here.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us at

You can find out what kind of activities the Youth Membership Scheme offers below.

Read about why one of our members joined here.

Work Experience - Placements available!

Go behind the scenes of our busy science education centre and assist us with day-to-day running of our activities. This could involve helping staff with school visits, carrying out administrative tasks, writing blog posts or developing new educational content. You’ll develop a range of transferable skills, and gain insight into the world of work and higher education through working alongside our team.

Work experience placements at Centre of the Cell are best suited to young people interested in STEM/health related careers.

Please note that our placements do not include any laboratory work.

Key information

  • Placements are during term time, Monday – Friday, 10am – 3pm. Permission from your school is required to attend.
  • Placements are one week long. We are not able to offer placements any longer than this.
  • Placements are offered as part of the YMS – you must join in order to do a placement with us.

To find out more about our work experience and enquire about potential dates, email


Volunteers assist us with our events for families during the school holidays. You’ll help our visitors get the most out of their experience, and help our staff with practical tasks. You’ll be expected to be reliable, proactive and friendly. Volunteering with us offers an opportunity to develop your communication skills and make your CV stand out!

We recruit volunteers via our monthly YMS newsletter.

Advice & Support

Advice and Support sessions take place throughout the year. These sessions include:

Support with the university application process for medicine, dentistry and other science-related university courses.

Careers workshops, where you can meet scientists working at Queen Mary University of London and medical or dental students studying at Barts & The London School of Medicine & Dentistry.

Biology revision sessions to help you prepare for exams during the Easter holidays .

These sessions are advertised via our monthly YMS newsletter.

Summer School

The Centre of the Cell Summer School for up to twelve Year 12 students takes place during the summer holidays, and involves a week packed full of activities which provide first-hand experience of science and health-related careers, such as laboratory work and clinical skills workshops. The Summer School is the only YMS activity with a competitive application process but it is still free of charge.

This year we’re running two schools! We’re in the process of finalising what each week will look like and we’ll update the website when we have.

The first will be from Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August and the second will be from Monday 19th August to Friday 23rd August. Participants will only be able to attend one school.

Our application deadline is 9am Monday 13th May.

Click here to apply

Big Question Lectures

Every year we host several Big Question lectures aimed at our Youth Members and delivered by a leading scientist on the Whitechapel campus of Queen Mary University of London. Members can bring friends and family to hear about ground-breaking research happening here in London, and to ask our speaker about their work. Previous Big Questions have included: “The Great Plague: How have autopsies transformed our understanding of disease?” and “Will Robots Replace Surgeons?

Find out about upcoming lectures and watch previous lectures here.

Special Projects

Occasionally we are able to offer a small group of Youth Members the opportunity to work on a long-term project. Previous projects included the Sores, Spores & Sickly Bugs project, where Youth Members visited archives and researched the history of medical treatment in East London, and used their research to develop and deliver activities to families. You can find out more about this project here.

Youth Forum & Steering Group

Youth Forums provide unique opportunities for Members to get involved with exciting projects.  Past meetings have included:

  • Working with us to develop upcoming Big Question lectures.
  • Testing new educational content.
  • Meeting with researchers and giving feedback on funding applications.

We recruit participants for Youth Forum meetings via our monthly YMS newsletter.

The YMS Steering Group is a small group of Youth Members who meet a few times a year to provide feedback on YMS activities. This is an excellent opportunity to influence the YMS and help us make it the best it can be. If you’d like to join, email

Our activities and opportunities are available free of charge, but on a first-come, first-served basis (except for the Summer School), and only to Youth Members. To enrol and receive our monthly newsletter, please complete our online form here.

Youth Members are encouraged to demonstrate their interest and motivation by enrolling themselves and maintaining their own bookings for events.

If you have any enquiries about our Youth Membership Scheme, please don’t hesitate to get in touch by emailing us at