About the program
- The primary objective of the Oakland University Summer Institute in Bioengineering and Health Informatics is to promote graduate studies and careers in Bioengineering and Bioinformatics to bright and talented students pursuing degrees in Computer, Natural, Health Sciences, and other related majors. Although the institute is open to all students, our goal is to focus on enhancing career opportunities for African American and other minority students in the fields of bioengineering and health informatics. During each summer, fifteen recruited participants will spend 10 summer weeks on Oakland University campus. The institute will start from the third week of May and will engage the participants by immersing them in a comprehensive learning and research environment. The students receive a two-week focused training session followed by eight weeks of full time research. Research is conducted within a multidisciplinary team and encompasses the full life-cycle from defining the research problem, exploring multiple solutions, discussing progress with peers and wider audiences, and formulating findings and making conclusions. The students are provided ample opportunities to form protege-mentor relationships with faculty mentors, graduate students, and other researchers involved in the program. Additional activities during the summer include visits to research laboratories and participation in "Diversity in Bioengineering Day". Both of these activities allow them to meet with a diverse group of successful professionals from academia and industry and discus all aspects of their careers and lives as professionals in bioengineering. Student participants are strongly encouraged to continue their research throughout the academic year. Fall and winter workshops will be organized to let the students sustain the momentum, to assist them in writing and submitting their research results to national or international conferences, and to prepare them for making research presentations and networking skills.
- Intellectual merit: The tangible intellectual output of the summer institute is the research produced by ten research mentors and fifteen students who spend 10 weeks dedicated to solving multidisciplinary problems within a collegial, synergetic, and somewhat competitive atmosphere. Past experience with similar programs indicate that significant results are obtained even in such a short time. The less tangible but not less significant output of the summer institute is of a pedagogical nature and consists of the lessons learned by the faculty for successful recruiting, mentoring, and retention of all, and particularly minority students.
- Broader Impact: The summer institute is designed to impact directly and immediately 60 students (15 each summer) by steering them towards further studies in Bioengineering and Bioinformatics. The summer institute will also have the following broader impacts: (1) It will increase minority representation in the fields of bioengineering and health informatics. The institute graduates will in turn serve as role models for new generations of students. (2) The progress on five multidisciplinary research projects in bioengineering and health informatics each year will stimulate interdisciplinary research and inter-departmental collaboration in bioengineering and bioinformatics. (3) Most of the activities related to the program, from recruiting to the many special events open to the public have an indirect impact on a much larger number of students, thus raising their awareness of the field of Bioengineering and Health Informatics and thus making graduate studies and research careers in the field a concrete option. (4) The lessons learned from this institute about successful retention and mentoring of students, particularly the minority students, will be disseminated.
- Ten weeks full time research program. Students can not be working or taking classes at the same time.
- Research in teams of 2 or 3 under close supervision by multi-disciplinary faculty.
- Variety of research topics available in Bioengineering and Health Informatics.
- Undergraduate students receive a stipend of $4,000 and graduate students receive a stipend of $5,500.
- Students also receive meal allowance and travel subsidy to attend a conference.
- Out-of-town students will be housed in the university housing. The students who stay on campus will receive a housing subsidy of $600.
- Program open to all non-graduating undergraduate or graduate students (US citizens and permanent residents) with interest in bioengineering and computer applications related to health sciences or biology.
- Students will be selected based on statement of interest, letters of recommendation, and GPA.