University Honors ProgramUniversity of Cincinnati

University Honors Program

Cincinnati Children's Hospital/UC College of Medicine Biomedical Research Mentoring Program

University Honors Graduate Jessica Deye in a Research Lab

University Honors Graduate Jessica Deye in a Research Lab

Program overview
This undergraduate research opportunity is a collaboration between Cincinnati Children's Hospital, UC's College of Medicine (UCCOM), and the University Honors Program. UCCOM graduate students mentor undergraduate University Honors students in their research labs (primarily in Cincinnati Children's Hospital). This program is geared towards first- and second-year undergraduate honors students interested in careers in biomedical research and/or entering PhD, MD, or MD/PhD programs in biomedical fields. Placements typically require 8-15 hours of work per week (this will vary by lab) in spring term, with the possibility of becoming full-time in the summer. Schedules are flexible. Mentoring is provided by the graduate students working on these projects and oversight is provided by their faculty advisors (typically the lab's PI).

Oversight of the program is the responsibility of Cincinnati Children's Hospital, UCCOM Graduate Studies Office, and the University Honors Program. University Honors students must fulfill the safety and health requirements and training specified by the hosting institution where the laboratory is located. University Honors students must also report on their progress to the University Honors Program as required and in a timely fashion.

To complete the work as an honors experience during the summer, students must present their research at the SURF poster symposium and write a reflection at the end of the summer (and at other points if the research continues). Students are expected to participate in all SURF professional development opportunities and meetings. Participating in SURF social events is optional, and students will be responsible for any associated costs.

Program goals

  • To provide first- and second-year undergraduate University Honors students with training and experience in high-level biomedical research
  • To enable UCCOM graduate students to develop mentoring skills.

It is expected that participating undergraduate students will establish a 1-2 year commitment to be trained by the lab and to participate in research under the guidance of the graduate student contact; however, continued placement is not guaranteed.

University Honors students may submit honors experiential learning project proposals for both their spring and summer placements to request an honors grant (if the student is otherwise not funded by the lab or research).

Students who work in their mentor’s research lab full-time (for 14 weeks or more) in summer could receive up to $2000 as an honors grant. Students who work part-time in their mentor's lab in the summer and/or spring could receive a grant of a lesser amount.

Grants for summer placements would likely not be awarded until fall term, as the grants must be awarded during a term in which students are enrolled in classes. Please carefully read the details about honors grants to make sure you are aware of potential financial aid issues as well.

Students must apply to receive an honors grant in spring and/or summer by submitting an honors research experience proposal.

Contact Kayti Kennard ( with questions about grants, as they will be handled individually.

How to Apply
The application deadline for 2014 projects is Friday, November 8th, 2013. All University Honors students are eligible; first- and second-year students are especially encouraged to apply.

Instructions for Applicants are available here.

Walk-In assistance with application materials will be available on Monday, October 28th from 10am-Noon in Swift 708.

Matching and Participation
Students must confirm their commitment to a lab in writing (email is fine) in order for a match to be complete.

Participating students will be required to attend an Orientation during the first week of December and professional development seminars (one per month) throughout the spring semester.

Opportunities to Learn More
Information Sessions: Learn more about the program and get tips on the application process.
Monday, October 21st at 10:15am
Wednesday, October 23rd at 2:30pm
Thursday, October 24th at 1:45pm

Meet and Greet with Mentors
: Meet the mentors and learn about their research projects, in order to inform your applications and the matching process.
Wednesday, October 30th: 2:30 - 4:30pm in TUC417

Download the schedule of presenters: Meet & Greet with Mentors Program

Contact Kayti Kennard (

The application cycle for research in Spring 2014 is now closed. Please see the descriptions for a sense of the types of projects that are typically available.