The Department of Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology at the University of Chicago is at the forefront of research in molecular mechanisms underlying cell biology and organismal development. Current faculty work on fundamental problems in biology using a wide range of model systems including viruses, bacteria, protozoa, fungi, plants, nematode worms, fruit flies, fish and mice. With funding from the National Science Foundation, the Department offers an exciting opportunity for talented undergraduates to acquire experience in research. This program is designed for students who are interested in attending graduate school and pursuing a career in science. MGCB Summer Internships allow students to devote themselves to research projects, working in collaboration with graduate students or postdoctoral fellows, to address important problems in biology.
Interns will be hosted by research laboratories in the department, most of which are housed in the Cummings Life Sciences Center, with several laboratories in a nearby building. Interns will have full access to the advanced instrumentation available in the host laboratories as well as in a large set of superb core facilities, including advanced light and electron microscopy, next-generation DNA sequencing, and a wide range of biophysical approaches.
In addition to research, interns will participate in workshops on communicating scientific results and ethics in research. See the schedule of activities below.
|February 6, 2023||Application due date|
|February-March||Applications reviewed by Steering Committee; interns chosen and host laboratories assigned|
|March-April||Interns contacted by Program Administrator with internship information|
|April-May||Interns contacted by PI of host laboratory|
|TBD||Interns arrive in Chicago and move into dormitory**|
|Early June||Session starts TBD|
|Week 1||Departmental welcoming reception; workshop on laboratory safety; 10 min intern presentations on planned projects|
|Week 2-9||Faculty seminars on Thursdays (7 total) at lunch|
|Week 3||Workshop on scientific ethics|
|Week 3-9||Friday lunch meetings with interns and faculty to present progress, with each intern presenting bi-weekly|
|Week 5||Workshop on applying to graduate school|
|Week 10||Departmental minisymposium with 15 min intern presentations. Poster session with Departmental reception|
|Flexible scheduling during summer||Social evenings with faculty|
**On-site/move-in information will be available per COVID guidelines and restrictions**
Chicago is one of the most vibrant of American cities, particularly exciting in the summer with a succession of free music festivals. The University is located in the neighborhood of Hyde Park. Hyde Parkers have easy access via public transportation to the cultural riches of downtown Chicago, as well as enjoying beautiful local parks along the Chicago lakeshore. REU interns will be housed in dormitories near the research laboratories and a twenty minute walk to Promontory Point, a favorite spot for summer barbecues and lake swimming.
Based on individual student's preferences and faculty availability, each intern will be assigned a faculty mentor and will design a research project in close consultation with that mentor. Active participation in that research project will be the main focus of the summer.
Students will be expected to participate in research for at least 40 hours per week for the full 10 weeks, and may not enroll in classes or hold outside employment during the term of their internship. Students will also be exposed to the types of research being pursued in the department during weekly lunchtime seminars given by faculty.
To learn more about projects in which participants might be involved, view the list of MGCB REU faculty trainers below.
Each student will receive a $6,000 stipend, plus $750 food allowance, plus travel expenses to and from the University. In addition, housing will be provided, with comfortable accommodations within a convenient University of Chicago undergraduate dormitory.
Faculty Participants in the Summer 2023 REU Program:
|Richard Fehon||Regulation of epithelial polarity and proliferation during development|
|Ben Glick||Biogenesis of secretory pathway organelles in yeast and mammalian cells, and directed evolution of fluorescent proteins|
|Michael Glotzer||Cytokinesis in animal cells|
|Jean Greenberg||Plant defense against bacterial infection, and bacterial virulence mechanisms|
|Sally Horne-Badovinac||Polarized epithelia|
|David Kovar||Actin assembly in fission yeast, from fundamental cellular mechanisms to cancer|
|Stephen Kron||Signal transduction, cell cycle control, and checkpoints. Technology development|
|Heng-Chi Lee||Small RNA-mediated epigenetic regulation & genome surveillance|
|Ellie Heckscher||Development, function, and evolution of motor circuits|
|Sampriti Mukherjee||Sensory regulation of bacterial behaviors - individuals to biofilm communities|
|Ed Munro||Cytoskeletal dynamics and cell polarization and morphogenesis|
|David Pincus||Cellular stress responses and protein homeostasis|
|Ilaria Rebay||Transcriptional regulatory circuits in development and disease|
|Michael Rust||The role of oscillations and rhythms in living systems|
|Jonathan Staley||Pre-mRNA splicing - mechanisms and regulation in yeast and humans|
This program is limited to students whose home institution is not the University of Chicago. Participants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States and have a strong interest in research. The MGCB REU program is designed to encourage and enhance the participation of students from schools without large research programs and from members of minorities currently underrepresented in the sciences. We will not accept applicants who are currently enrolled in institutions with PhD programs in Biological Sciences comparable to the University of Chicago. Applicants currently enrolled in their junior year of college are preferred, but students in earlier years will also be considered.
The link to complete an application is below. The application deadline is February 6, 2023, and successful candidates will be contacted during February-March.
Application link: https://apply-grad.uchicago.edu/apply/sumr
Move-in will take place on Date TBD. The program will run for 10 weeks with a start date spanning the 6-13 June interval; please check back for updates.
For more information, please contact Aaron Turkewitz.