BSCD Undergraduate Research Opportunities

The University of Chicago's Biological Sciences Collegiate Division (BSCD) has developed innovative and exciting curricular initiatives in undergraduate science education and expanded undergraduate research opportunities. Approximately 80 percent to 90 percent of all biology majors engage in some form of research activity. These successful programs provide a firm foundation for the undergraduate research experience. Explore opportunities listed below.

    Most research labs at The University of Chicago welcome undergraduate trainees. Nevertheless, one of the most daunting tasks for an undergraduate student interesting in pursuing research is identifying a mentor and lab in which to perform research. Here are a few approaches:

    Find faculty in areas that interest you

    Choose an area of interest among The BSD Graduate Programs and find Faculty In... to see one sentence blurbs describing the work of faculty in this area. Select a faculty member to learn more about their research and their lab. You can also search for faculty you have met in your classes to learn more about their research.

    Prospective biology majors interested in learning more about the variety of labs conducting biological research on campus can attend one or more quarters of the non-credit course BIOS 10098 Pizza with the PIs: Introduction to Biology Research at The University of Chicago. Offered Winter and Spring Quarters. 

    Reach Out

    Email faculty members whose work interests you to let them know that you are interested in training in their lab, if there is space, and ask if they are open to meeting with you. Understand that faculty lead complicated lives, and in some cases will not respond to your email. Do not be discouraged, but have backup plans if you receive no response or the lab is full.


    While most labs are open to inquiries for students even if they do not advertise positions, there are some resources that may be helpful in connecting with a lab that interests you:

Summer Research Funding & Fellowships

    The BSCD Summer Innovation Fellowships consist of thematic research programs in a variety of fields.  For some fellowships, you apply with an identified research mentor and project, and for other fellowships you are matched with a mentor and project.

    Complete program descriptions and application instructions for each individual program will be available on Handshake.  

    For more information: Paul Strieleman (

    Deadline for all 2024 BSCD Summer Innovation Fellowships:   April 1, 2024

    Research fellowships in the following focused disciplines are available:

    BSCD Chromatin & Epigenetics Undergraduate Research Fellowship

    The Chromatin & Epigenetics Undergraduate Research Fellowship provides an immersive research experience to learn cutting-edge methodologies and develop analytical skills towards discovery in the field of epigenetics.

    BSCD Developmental Neurobiology Undergraduate Fellowship (DNUFO) 

    The Developmental Neurobiology Undergraduate Fellowship Opportunity (DNUFO) is a 10-week summer program designed to facilitate rigorous, full-time research, build networking opportunities, gain professional development skills, and expose students to research outside of their immediate interests.

    BSCD Ecology and Evolution Fellowship

    Ecology and Evolution Fellowships are aimed at students interested in the Ecology and Evolution Track, including lab or field research

    BSCD Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship in Bioimaging for Oncology and Related Disciplines (SURFBOARD)

    SURFBOARD is an interdisciplinary summer research program in biomedical imaging with applications in oncology, neuroscience, and beyond.

    BSCD Research Foundations in Genetics and Genomics

    The Research Foundations in Genetics and Genomics Program provides early-stage undergraduate researchers with an opportunity to gain hands-on training carrying out a novel research project under the mentorship of UChicago research labs. In addition, students gain foundational skills in analyzing and presenting primary scientific literature, communicating with peers and the scientific community and attending weekly research seminars with scientific leaders from around the world, all in small group settings meant to maximize interaction between participants and researchers.

    BSCD Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship in Pathophysiology, Biology, and Bioenergetics of Renal Diseases

    A summer fellowship to allow dedicated time to explore and understand the physiology and metabolism of the kidney in health and disease.

    BSCD Undergraduate Summer Fellowship in Public Health Research

    The BSCD Undergraduate Summer Fellowship in Public Health Research aims to provide undergraduate students an immersive research experience through close interactions with faculty in the Department of Public Health Sciences and their research projects. Student projects focus on interdisciplinary topics that bring biostatistical, quantitative and qualitative methods to improve understanding of complex problems in population health.

    BSCD Quantitative Biology Summer Fellowship

    BSCD Quantitative Biology fellowship combines research using computational methods into a range of biological problems with a collaborative environment for learning new skills and concepts.

    BSCD Collegiate Translational Medicine Fellowship

    The Collegiate Translational Medicine Program (CTMP) is a mentored, clinically-oriented translational research experience for undergraduates, offering training in translational research by exposure and immersion into specific research projects currently being conducted in the Department of Medicine.

    BSCD Research Fellowship- Working with Non-Traditional Model Organisms in the Biological Sciences

    This fellowship supports undergraduate summer research outside mainstream model systems research. Organismal diversity provides a rich and largely untapped resource to study biological mechanisms from gene regulation and development to biophysics and biomechanics to behavior and neural networks. However, most laboratory research remains focused on a small number of conventional experimental systems. The goal of this fellowship is to encourage budding scientists to take advantage of these new opportunities. Students will work in lab at the University of Chicago campus or at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) at Woods Hole on the Atlantic coast and will present their research at an undergraduate research symposium at MBL.

    The Biological Science Collegiate Division (BSCD) Fellowship program supports Undergraduate Students to conduct 10-weeks of research in biology under the supervision of a University of Chicago Principal Investigator.  Apply with an identified project and research mentor.

    Applications will be on Handshake. 

    For more information:  Navneet Bhasin ( or Paul Strieleman (

    Deadline for all 2024 BSCD Summer Fellowship Applications:  April 1, 2024

    Jeff Metcalf Fellowship Grant and the Odyssey Metcalf Fellowship Grant provide funding for summer internships in any industry. Remote internships, as well as short-term and small-scale projects are also eligible for grant funding. Visit Career Advancement- Internship Grants for more information. 

    The MBL SURF Fellowships take place on-site at the MBL in Woods Hole, MA.  

    Learn more about the program, read a full list of program mentors and their research/project statements, and apply for a fellowship on this website.  

    For more information:  Dave Lerner (

    Deadline for 2024 MBL Metcalf Summer Research Fellowship Applications: February 15, 2024

    The Center for Global Health Summer Research Fellowship will provide funding for promising undergraduate and graduate students to take part in a 10 to 12-week Fellowship where they will benefit from first-hand experience working in research settings at one of CGH's partnering sites abroad. 

    Applications will be on Handshake.

    Deadline for 2024 Center for Global Health Summer Fellowship Applications:  January 26, 2024

    For more information please contact Lauren Singh, MPH.

    The Katen Scholars Program supports rising second, third-, and fourth-year students interested in pursuing careers in health, medicine, and science. Students apply to work on a specific research project under the direction of a UChicago Principal Investigator. Learn more here.

    Sponsored by the Karen Katen Fund for Science, the Katen Scholars Program supports rising second, third, and fourth year students interested in pursuing careers in health, medicine, and science. Scholars are awarded a $4,000 stipend to complete a summer research project with a faculty mentor.  Previous research experience is not required. 

    The program is 8 weeks in length, beginning in June and culminating with a symposium at the end of August. 


    • The application for the Katen Scholars program becomes available each January through Handshake.

    The University of Chicago Neuroscience Institute provides multiple opportunities for summer research.

    Detailed descriptions of the programs and mechanisms for application are provided on this website.  

Academic Year Funding & Fellowships

    The Quad Summer Undergraduate Research Grants program offers research grants that are competitive, open-discipline awards intended to enhance the educational experience of University of Chicago College students by supporting summer scholarly undergraduate research and creative inquiry experiences through active participation in faculty-mentored research. Quad Summer Undergraduate Research Scholars are expected to participate in the annual scholars programming held during the academic year following their summer appointment and to present their summer research at the the annual University of Chicago Undergraduate Research Symposium held each May.

    Complete description and application instructions can be found at the Chicago Center for Research and Fellowships (CCRF) website.  

    Deadline for 2024 Quad Summer Research Grant Applications:  April 1, 2024


    Quad Research Grants for the Academic Year 

    Quad Undergraduate Research Grants

    Students will apply with an identified project and research mentor.

    Autumn Deadline: October 2, 2023

    Winter Deadline:  January 8, 2024


    Quad Faculty Research Grants

    Grant funding available for faculty mentors to sponsor undergraduate research positions.

    Autumn 2023 Deadline September 29, 2023

    Jeff Metcalf Fellowship Grant and the Odyssey Metcalf Fellowship Grant provide funding for academic year internships and supervised research internships in any industry. Remote internships, as well as short-term and small-scale projects are also eligible for grant funding. Visit Career Advancement- Internship Grants for more information. 

Additional Resources