REU Mentors

Systems biology and biomedical data sciences is a research strength area at the University of Virginia. It's why our REU can pull faculty mentors from ten departments across four schools.

Our faculty are committed to training undergraduates and involving them as critical components of their research programs. Undergraduate students in our faculty mentors' labs have won best paper awards in conference proceedings, won competitions, and co-authored papers in high-profile journals including Science, Nature Cell Biology, Neuron, Nature Neuroscience, Molecular Systems Biology, and PLOS Computational Biology.

Timothy Allen, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: pedagogy in systems modeling, protein translation

Laura Barnes, Systems & Information Engineering
Research areas: health informatics, machine learning

Silvia Blemker, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: muscle mechanics and remodeling

Phil Bourne, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: systems pharmacology, multiscale modeling using data science techniques

Maureen Carey, Infectious Diseases and International Health/Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: metabolic networks, enteric infections in children

Mete Civelek, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: big data analytics, personalized medicine

Christopher Deppmann, Biology
Research areas: neuron dynamics

Sepideh Dolatshahi, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: neonatal and maternal systems immunology

Greg Gerling, Systems & Information Engineering
Research areas: computational neuroscience, design

Kevin Janes, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: cellular signaling, cancer, host-pathogen interactions

Peter Kasson, Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
Research areas: infection by emerging viruses, drug-resistant bacteria, protein structure

Matthew Lazzara, Chemical Engineering / Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: cell signalling, cancer

Greg Medlock, Pediatrics  / Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: host-microbe and microbe-microbe interactions, infectious disease

Clint Miller, Center for Public Health Genomics  / Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: genomics, data science, cardiovascular genetics

Kristen Naegle, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: regulation and function of tyrosine phosphorylation in complex networks

Jason Papin, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: metabolic networks, infectious disease, cancer

Shayn Peirce-Cottler, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: tissue patterning, angiogenesis, tissue engineering

Jeffrey Saucerman, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: cellular signaling, image processing

Chongzhi Zang, Center for Public Health Genomics / Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: bioinformatics, cancer, epigenetics and genomics

Aidong Zhang Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: adaptive machine learning, automated indexing

Eli Zunder, Biomedical Engineering
Research areas: cell lineage trajectories, brain disorders


  • Eligibility and Application (Summer 2020)

    In order to participate in the Summer 2020 Virtual REU, applicants must be:

    • U.S. citizens or permanent residents
    • Full-time undergraduate students returning Fall 2020
    • Priority consideration will be given to rising seniors (graduating by summer 2021)
    • Available to work ~15-20 hours/week over the timeframe of the program (June 22 - August 14)
    • Additionally, applicants must have access to broadband internet over the timeframe of the program (June 22 - August 14)


    Additional Information

    Students who have completed at least three years of a science, mathematics, or engineering-based curriculum that includes introductory biology, chemistry, and calculus are especially encouraged to apply.  For this virtual program, experience in programming is strongly recommended, but not required. Women, underrepresented minorities, and military veterans are especially encouraged to apply.

    Applicants must complete an online application form that includes: basic information about you, a resume, an unofficial transcript, some short essays that address motivation for the program and what you hope to get out of the virtual research experience, and two references (preferably academic or supervisory, rather than “community” letters), all to be submitted electronically. We are using the NSF’s REU common application portal

    The website will ask you to create a user account. When your account is created, follow the steps provided on the website to complete the common application. Make sure to select UVA's "Multi-Scale Systems Bioengineering" when selecting the Site to which you want to apply. 


    Dates and Deadlines

    • Priority review for applications will begin on June 1, 2020.
    • The deadline for completed applications (including support letters) is midnight on June 14, 2020
    • The program dates are June 22 - August 14, 2020.


    If you have any questions, please contact:

    Hannah Moore
    Department of Biomedical Engineering
    University of Virginia
    Box 800759, Health System
    Charlottesville, VA 22908

    The UVA Multi-Scale Systems Bioengineering REU is funded by NSF Grant #1560282

    NSF Common REU Application
  • Letters of Support

    The NSF Common Application system will automatically prompt the letter writers you designate, once you submit your application. As a courtesy, please let your letter writers know that you have applied and should expect this prompt. We strongly recommend that your letters should be from a faculty member, research advisor, or other professional mentor within your discipline who can address your potential, abilities, and motivation for engaging in research. If you have already applied to other REUs, your letters (and your transcripts) should still be in the system.

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    What will a typical week be like? Read more about what a typical week may look like in a remote-mentored REU in this Message from the Program Director Dr. Timothy Allen.

    If I do this REU, may I also do a summer session course? Is that possible? In terms of time, yes. The REU is 15-20 hours per week.  But please weigh the fact that is a demanding remote-mentored REU in computational modeling / data science topics. So it's going to involve mostly screen time. As will your summer session course. That's one factor. A second factor is what Dr. Allen mentions in his Message. The work you do in the REU will be remote-mentored but self-directed.  We will be supportive, but you will be ultimately reponsible for your own learning and performance in the program. SO: make sure you have the bandwidth to excel in all your endeavors this summer!

    I'm a UVA student. Can I apply? Yes, UVA students may apply!  In fact, we have extra funds from the UVA Engineering Office of Diversity and Engagement to support about 5 students who are returning UVA students. On top of that, we may use REU funds to support an additional returning UVA students.  Women, underrepresented minorities, and military veterans are especially encouraged to apply.

    Are you only selecting rising seniors into the Virtual REU? No, but especially for non-UVA students, we are looking first at the applications of rising seniors, because this may be the last opportunity for a senior to try this kind of research on for size prior to graduation. However, non-seniors have certainly proved extremely competitive in our REU in past years!  Women, underrepresented minorities, and military veterans are especially encouraged to apply.

    Send your further questions to