"Introducing minority students with different scientific backgrounds to interdisciplinary integrated oncology research in focused team projects."

For centuries, the physical sciences have combined mathematics-based theoretical studies with empirical investigations to understand natural phenomena over temporal and spatial scales that span many orders of magnitude. However, investigators in the biomedical sciences have only recently recognized the potential value of quantitative modeling and teams of multidisciplinary collaborators often form haphazardly and remain isolated because few universities have programs that successfully traverse established, long-standing department barriers. Our summer program is designed to raise awareness of the intellectual value and excitement of multidisciplinary research in undergraduate students who view themselves as either a biologist or a mathematician but not both.

Our goals for the summer program also include raising interest in this avenue of investigation among minority students. We hope that some of our program participants will become trainees and then leaders in multidisciplinary cancer research thus insuring our field will gain from the inclusion of both talented and diverse individuals.


How it works

The program will run for 8 weeks each summer (early/mid June – early/mid August) for a total of 8 students (4 teams with 2 students each). Each team has a student with STEM and a student with biology/medicine background. Students are assigned a Moffitt Principal Investigator as primary mentor, who will design a specific project with defined milestones and deliverables. Each project consists of hands-on experimental as well as theoretical modeling work. Students in each team will be in charge of the respective project parts and educate their project partner on their expertise. Moffitt mentors will identify postdoctoral fellows and staff scientists in their research group to guide and provide every day mentoring to the students.

What will you do

Teams will prepare a final report and a final presentation. The final presentations will be delivered in public on Moffitt Research Day at the end of all summer programs.

As all projects will investigate questions of ongoing research studies in each mentor’s laboratory, project results will likely contribute to a peer-reviewed publication with students’ contributions being appropriately recognized following established research ethics.

FLiiCR students will attend introductory lectures from the other programs and participate in multiple networking socials and luncheons.

Recruitment Institutions

Morehouse College, Spelman College; Atlanta, Georgia

Morehouse is the only all male historically black institution of higher learning in the US. Spelman is a historically black liberal arts college for women.