Student and summer programs for undergraduates, high school students and teachers

The Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio offers a variety of summer programs for undergraduate students seeking research experiences in the Biological Sciences. Several summer programs utilizes a single application which permits students to select up to three programs in which to apply.

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For more information please visit the websites of the individual programs listed below.

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The Department of Pharmacology has a ten-week summer research program that will run June 1, 2015 to August 7, 2015. The summer program offers participants a variety of experiences that will help prepare them for success in research-intensive doctoral programs.

Participants will have participate in the following:

• research responsibilities
• attend seminars
• actively participate in a student journal club
• take part in formal course work

Prior research experience is not necessary, and students of all undergraduate levels are encouraged to apply. Contact Angie Watts, program coordinator with specific questions regarding this program.

Phone: (210) 567-4220

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Summer Physiology Undergraduate Research (SPUR)

This ten-week research program is designed for highly motivated college undergraduate students with a keen interest in research careers in biomedical science.

The Department of Physiology offers an exciting and diverse array of research areas, geared toward understanding the cellular and molecular underpinnings of human physiology. We seek to understand how these factors influence whole organism physiology using a number of novel model systems and cutting edge technologies.

For more information, visit the SPUR website

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South Texas Advanced Research Training – Undergraduate Program (START-UP)

In partnership with St. Mary’s University, Our Lady of the Lake University, Trinity University, University of Texas at San Antonio, and University of the Incarnate Word, START-UP offers a unique 2 year opportunity for students interested in pursuing a PhD in the neurosciences.

For more information, visit the START-UP website.

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Research Opportunities in Bioinformatics, Cancer Biology & Health Disparities for Undergraduates/Graduates

For UTSA Students Only:

The Cancer Bioinformatics Initiative: A UTSA/UTHSCSA Partnership offers an exciting ten‐week summer research internship program from May 31, 2016 to August 5, 2016. The goal of this program is to train students from quantitative fields such as computer science, statistics, and related disciplines in cancer biology. This unique program matches each undergraduate and master's level student from UTSA with a UTHSCSA cancer researcher as well as a UTSA faculty member from the student’s home department. Participants will engage in research as part of an ongoing cancer/health disparity research project, attend seminars, actively participate in a student journal club, and tour various research divisions at the UTHSCSA. Successful candidates will receive a stipend of $4,000 to help defray the cost of participation in the program. Students may be eligible for independent study or internship credit applicable towards their degree. See for additional information about the Cancer Bioinformatics Initiative.


  • Application for program
  • Personal Statement/Letter of Interest
    Submit a 1-page letter of interest indicating why you would like to be considered for this program. Please address the following:
    1. 1) What interests you about this program (please be specific)
    2. 2) What you hope to gain from this experience
    3. 3) Special contributions you can make to this program
    4. 4) Quantitative expertise and previous research experience
    5. 5) Your career plans
  • Resume
  • Transcript
    Submit a complete unofficial transcript that includes the courses you are currently enrolled in.
  • Letters of recommendation
    Provide up to 2 names as references. The program coordinator will contact recommenders directly. Please confirm that your recommender is willing to provide a letter prior to registration.
  • International Documents
    If you are an international student, you must provide your visa category as indicated on the application form.


Application deadline for the Cancer Bioinformatics Initiative Internship Program is March 20, 2016 .


An application may be obtained by contacting the program coordinator, Eva E. Garcia-Rodriguez at or apply here.

Program Focus: Bioinformatics, Cancer Biology, Health Disparities
Program Dates: May 31, 2016 - August 5, 2016
Stipend: Yes

Robin Leach, Ph.D., UTHSCSA Program Director,
Kay Robbins, Ph.D., UTSA Program Director,
Eva E. Garcia-Rodriguez, Program Coordinator,

For HTU students only

2016 DOD Summer Program Overview

Contact: Eva E. Garcia-Rodriguez, Program Coordinator,

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Dental Student Research Program

The Dental School Summer Research Program is an intensive introduction to dental academics with a hands-on laboratory research experience in basic or clinical research.

The students who applied, selected and accepted will participate in the program during their dental education, with research conducted on the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio campus during May and June.

Research or program directed questions, e-mail Dr. Thomas Oates at or Cuauhtemoc Garcia at

Phone: (210) 567-3167

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BEAT Academy - Biomedical Excellence and Academic Training

The goal of The BEAT Academy at the UT Health Science Center San Antonio is to expose high school students to a unique opportunity to medical and biomedical research and provide them with guidelines for a successful future in a health career of their choice. The curriculum is based on an interaction between the medical and biomedical faculty through seminars and hands-on activities in these fields. Subjects will include ongoing biomedical research occurring at the UT Health Science Center such as anatomy, physiology, medicine, molecular biology, aging, neurodegeneration and more.

The academy will provide students with the following:

• a behind-the-scenes view of the science and health professions-including visits to the human anatomy lab,
• interactions with real and state-of-the-art simulated patients for medical training,
• a glimpse of the latest advances in biomolecular technology,
• student-based biomolecular experiments and more.

In addition, students will enjoy a college prep session to glean more information on the career of their choice and ways to achieve this goal.

Candidates are invited to submit their applications to the Health Science Center by Friday, June 10, 2016. Please be advised that the application process is based on rolling admissions and we will accept qualifying students until seats are unavailable. Once the applications have been reviewed, we will notify the applicants of their acceptance status to the BEAT within a few weeks of submitting their application

Now accepting 2015 applications through June 10, 2016.

Email: Dr. Irene Chapa

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Voelcker Biomedical Research Academy

The vision of the Max and Minnie Voelcker Biomedical Research Academy is to provide an immersive biomedical research education and college preparatory program for San Antonio high school students. The Voelcker Biomedical Research Academy will partner the very best high school freshman students from the San Antonio and surrounding school districts with outstanding biomedical scientists from the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio to promote excellence in scholarship and biomedical research training for a 3 year period. In year 1, the Academy will consist of an immersive hands-on 7-week summer research program, in addition to participation in a number of special research oriented activities throughout the academic year. In years 2 and 3, students will participate in an 8-10 week, faculty-mentored research experience. Students will be supported through stipends during the summers of the program and parental involvement is also required.

The 7-week program will begin in June 2016. Application deadline is February 3, 2016. Note: Application submission is being revitalized. Please check November 20, 2016 for updated information.

Contact program Director Dr. Irene Chapa, 210-567-3941

For more information, visit the Voelcker website.

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Student Internship Program

A year-round program for high school, college, premed, or pre-PhD students designed to provide an intensive, hands-on, discovery-rich, creative and interdisciplinary research experience. This is a unique experience in learning and interdisciplinary research, with senior investigators serving as mentors and role models.

Trainees will have opportunities to work in one of three broad areas: immunology, molecular pathogenesis, or genetics/clinical epidemiology. Current areas of investigation are HIV/AIDS, atherosclerosis, bone disease, neurobiology, lupus, and alcoholism.

For inquiries contact Dr. Sunil Ahuja, along with an updated resume/CV including GPA, a personal statement, and a note about long-term goals via email.

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Northside ISD Summer Research Mentorship Program

This class is only open to students in the San Antonio Northside ISD students who have completed PreAP Chemistry, have at least one year of high school remaining, and are willing to commit to an 8-hour-a-day research assignment for 8 weeks in June and July.

Teacher recommendations and a student essay are required for the application. Applications are accepted during the spring term for placement in the summer program.

Course Information:
Selected students will be assigned a mentor from the faculty at UT Health Science Center San Antonio. The students will meet once a week as a class to discuss the research process and are expected to keep a lab journal, write research abstracts, and present their research to the class at the end of the summer. Students will present their research both orally and written to their home school during the ensuing school year. Upon successful completion of this course, students will receive an elective honors science research credit. No stipend is provided.

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Positively Aging®: Maximizing the Healthspan

Teacher Enrichment Initiatives (TEI) and the Voelcker Biosciences Teacher Academy (VBTA)

TEI provides over 500 science activities resulting from collaboration between science teachers and UTHSCSA scientists. Each activity is designed to connect the science classroom with real world, health related applications. Activities are aligned with Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and are free to download at the TEI website:

The VBTA’s mission is to create a collaborative network of educational professionals and offers free, year-round professional development opportunities for area science teachers, K-12. The VBTA sponsors monthly workshops and an annual conference where teachers engage with scientists and colleagues to learn about the latest scientific research, share best practices, and collaborate. All VBTA programs are free to San Antonio area teachers and provide TEA approved CPEs. Visit the VBTA website for more information:

To learn more, contact Rosemary Riggs, TEI Educational Development Specialist at or 210-567-4477.

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