Undergraduate Summer Bootcamp: Microbiome Research

IDEA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence

From bench to computer, a comprehensive research experience for students interested in biomedical life science and data science.

Program Objectives

The primary objective of this program is to expose undergraduate students to microbiome research at the University of Nevada, Reno. The program is supported by Nevada INBRE and the Nevada Bioinformatics Center.

During this three-week program participants will be introduced to:

• Safe lab procedures and etiquette
• DNA extraction and sample preparation for sequencing
• High-performance computing
• Linux and R coding
• Bioinformatics and data science
• Analysis of 16s rRNA sequencing data
• Interpretation of microbiome data
• Creation of scientific poster and presentation

For NSHE faculty: If you are interested in participating or supporting this program, please reach out to nvinbre@unr.edu. We certainly would welcome the support.

Eligibility & How to apply

The program is directed towards students who have completed at least their freshman year of undergraduate education. Seniors with a graduation date of August 2022 or after are also welcome to apply. Graduate students will only be considered if the available spots are not filled by undergraduates.

How to apply:

1. Complete and submit an online application here

2. Upload and attach a personal statement that addresses a) your academic background, b) scientific interests, c) if any past research experience, and d) what you hope to gain from the research experience. Do not exceed two pages.

3. Upload and attach your unofficial transcript

4. Indicate 1 academic reference, and provide their contact information in the application form. The application will automatically send them a link to the reference form to fill out. All references need to be submitted directly by the author by the application deadline. Your references will not receive the link to the reference form until your application is fully submitted. Please be sure to allow enough time for your references to complete the reference form by the application deadline. Reference forms are due April 22 at 11:59pm

Application deadline has been extended! Applications are now due by April 17, 2022 by 11:59 PM

Applications will be reviewed by the review committee and selected applicants will be notified of acceptance by April 18. Acceptance by the student will need to be confirmed by April 23 due to the competitiveness of this application and limited space.

Program Details

The summer research program is for three weeks from May 31 through June 18.

Week 1: Wet-lab, preparing samples for sequencing
Week 2: Concluding wet-lab portion and introduction to biomedical data science and bioinformatics
Week 3: Analyzing sequencing samples and presenting research findings

The program's project is designed to give the student an in-depth, hands-on exposure to biomedical research. Although the focus is on the microbiome, many of these skills are transferable and can be applied to other areas. The program will give students the unique experience of starting at the wet-lab bench preparing samples for sequencing, and will end with analyzing the samples via bioinformatics and biomedical data science. As such this program is of interested to students majoring in any of the life sciences, but also computational students interested in computer science and statistics.

There are no prerequisites, but lab experience or familiarity with R coding will be beneficial for participants.

Throughout the three weeks, students will be able to tour the University's campus, meet a variety of researchers, and be introduced to various scientific technologies beyond microbiome research.

Before the conclusion of the program, a research seminar will be hosted where students will have the chance to present their research.

It is expected that students will provide a one-page summary of the summer experience to the program director within 30 days after completion of their project.

Opportunities also exist for paid travel for selected individuals to present at regional or national science meetings. In addition, with the successful completion of the program, students may apply to become mentors for the summer program in 2023.

Bootcamp rate including housing & some food, for Nevada students travel to UNR's campus is also supported.

Applicant Category Cost
Nevada students

No cost (Thanks to Nevada INBRE)

IDeA state students $2,500, and contact your local INBRE for support


This program will be conducted in person at the University of Nevada, Reno. Dorm rooms will be available for students who are not local to Reno (further than 30 miles from the University's campus). More details about the program will be shared upon acceptance. Travel arrangement will need to be coordinated with program director.

Questions? For more information concerning this program please contact:

Juli Petereit, Ph.D.
Director, Nevada Bioinformatics Center
Co-Director Data Science Core, NIH IDeA NV INBRE
Associate Director BERD Core, NIH IDeA MW CTR-IN
University of Nevada, Reno
(775) 784 - 4359