Program Overview

Summer 2024: The Stressed Life of Cells



Our REU program will provide students with exciting and doable scientific projects as well as experiences that build self-confidence and encourage critical and independent thinking. Faculty from the Departments of Molecular Biosciences, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and Computational Biology will directly guide and mentor program participants as they perform state-of-the-art, hypothesis-driven research in different areas of the biomedical sciences, from molecules, to cells and organisms.


  • Reviewing applicaitons for Summer 2024. Selections may not be completed before April 30.


  • 26 FEBRUARY 2024 MON

  • Thank you for your interest in our program! Your application is a vote for science!


  • May 20 -- July 26, 2024


A Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program is a 10-week program that provides summer research opportunities at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas. The program is open to undergraduates who have completed one year of college courses and have not yet graduated.

Utilizing a variety of techniques and ideas, students will work together to acquire a better understanding of how molecules, cells and organisms experience  and respond to stress.  Students will be matched to their preferred project or scientific interest, as specified in the student's application.   The overlapping research interests of our faculty include the following disciplines:

  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Cell biology
  • Computational biology
  • Genetics
  • Molecular biology
  • Neurobiology
  • Stem cell biology
  • Virology

In addition to conducting research, REU participants will attend seminars and workshops designed to provide mentoring and enrichment in career development, in the graduate school applications/admissions process, and in effective scientific communication.  The program will include several opportunities for students to present research findings, including a campus-wide research symposium at the conclusion of the program.

Undergraduates studying biology, chemistry, mathematics, computer science, or bioinformatics are invited to apply. Students from groups underrepresented in the sciences and students currently enrolled in Primarily Undergraduate Institutions are also encouraged to apply.

Participating Faculty

  • REU participants receive individual mentoring in experimental design and implementation from faculty and laboratory members in the Departments of Molecular Biosciences, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, and Computational Biology
  • A list of mentoring faculty and a general description of research programs can be found under the Faculty Mentors and Projects link.

Program Activities and Stipends

  • Participants will be actively involved in the process of scientific inquiry for 10 weeks (May 22–July 28, 2023).
  • Enrichment activities include weekly seminars and workshops on graduate school, career opportunities and development, and mastering oral and written scientific communication. Students will present their findings in a campus-wide poster session at the end of the summer.
  • An introductory course in using the R programming language for data analysis will be provided by Dr. James Walters.
  • Participants receive a $6000 stipend.
  • Room and board is also provided, with housing arranged by KU Student Housing
  • Travel costs up to $500 per student are paid by the program.
  • Planned social activities will allow for group cohesiveness and help establish relationships between REU participants and the community of scientists here at the University of Kansas.


The program is intended for undergraduates who:

  • Have completed at least one year of college
  • Will be returning for at least one year of undergraduate study before graduation
  • Are United States citizens or permanent residents
  • Have limited opportunities to participate in biomedical laboratory research and development