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The Molecular and Cellular Biology Summer Program (IGP)

This program provides undergraduate students who may be interested in the Vanderbilt Interdisciplinary Graduate Program (IGP) hands-on research experience in the laboratory of an IGP faculty preceptor.


The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program (IGP) at Vanderbilt University conducts a summer research program as part of the Summer Science Academy for undergraduates who are interested in pursuing a career in the biomedical sciences. Participating departments include: Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Cancer Biology, Cell Biology, Microbiology and Immunology, Molecular Physiology and Biophysics, Neuroscience, Pathology, and Pharmacology. There are three primary objectives we seek to provide for each student during the summer.

  • To provide a substantive research experience that will allow each student to actively participate in a laboratory project including reading the relevant literature, developing ideas, and communicating findings to colleagues’ research and skills.
  • To provide enrichment seminars that will help construct a strong foundation on which to build scientific careers.
  • To provide guidance and preparation for entrance exams to graduate school.

Invitations to participate in the MCB summer program are sent to the selected qualified applicants by mid-February to mid-March. Students should reply with their decision to participate, as well as provide the names of the mentors they would like to be assigned. Assignments will be made based upon the needs of faculty preceptors and compatibility of applicants (determined from statement of purpose and recommendation letters). Participants will be notified of their assignment by mid-April allowing students the chance to establish communication with the assigned mentor prior to their arrival. Once in the lab, the summer interns will engage in laboratory experiments using a variety of biomedical techniques and instruments. The interns will hone their laboratory skills, collect data, make inferences based on their results, and become very familiar with the nature of scientific inquiry. The summer interns will then present the results of their own independent research projects at the research symposium that is held at the end of the summer.


  • The summer research interns will receive a stipend of $4000 for the nine-week period.
  • Housing will be provided at one of the Vanderbilt University campus dormitories.


Eligibility & Application

  • Rising juniors and seniors with a GPA of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale.
  • Applicants must have taken a biology, chemistry, and/or biochemistry course. Online application deadline is February 1. Click here to start the application through the Vanderbilt Summer Science Academy


  • Elizabeth Bowman, Ph.D.