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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Student biology research presented

More than 100 undergraduate student researchers will present poster projects of their research at the Undergraduate Biology Research Program conference Saturday.

The conference will be held at the Keating (BIO 5) building on the UA Health Sciences Center Campus, north of Speedway, from 1-5 p.m.

Established in 1988, the Undergraduate Biology Research Program provides paid research experience to undergraduate students by putting them to work in labs.

A two-year Undergraduate Biology Research Program participant, Brittany Choate truly loves what the program does for students like her. Choate works with an environmental microbiology doctoral candidate filtering water to check for fatal pathogens in Arizona recreational waters due to climate change.

“”It’s been a really, really fun gig, and I’m just glad that I got the chance to do it,”” she said.

Students get the chance to be funded for lab work by the program and their backer, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Students work hands-on in each laboratory.

“”They’re not just washing dishes and counting petri plates,”” Choate said. “”They actually get to run their own experiments and get hands-on experience with real-life lab work.””

And these opportunities are open to undergrads in any major wanting to study biology.

BRAVO! is the international research arm of Undergraduate Biology Research Program, said Kevin Keys, a math and linguistics major who studied biochromatics in skin pigmentation in Barcelona this past summer.

“”They funded me to do biology research even though I wasn’t a biology student,”” Keys said. “”The experience influenced me in my graduate applications … in statistics and biomathematics programs geared towards genetics, and I wouldn’t have known about it without UBRP.””

At the conference, there will be alumni of the program from Brown University, University of Colorado, Denver and some from the UA, like Joyce Schroeder and Jessie Brown, who will be presenting along with the undergraduate members of the program.

Giving a small introduction to their topic, the timeliness of their research and their findings, students? on a poster? present their work.

“”It’s a place where a bunch of UBRP students can present the research that they’ve been doing,”” said Robert Gonzales, an undergraduate studying the faults of current Parkinson’s research and treatments.

“”It’s an open venue so people can walk around, look at the posters and get an idea of the research the person has been doing and interact with the person doing the actual research,”” he said.

The program is accepting applications until mid-March for summer research, which can be extended into the school year.


For more information, visit or contact Carol Bender, program director at

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