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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Burrell College Summer Research Experience? 

The Summer Research Experience (SRE) is a six-week total immersion research opportunity that provides opportunities to conduct research under the supervision of a Burrell College Faculty researcher.   The SRE begins after Spring classes end and concludes with Medical Student Research Day prior to the beginning of the Fall semester.

What are the dates of the 2021 Summer Research Experience? 

The 2021 SRE begins on June 2, 2021 and ends on June 16, 2021.

What projects are available for the 2021 Summer Research Experience? 

Faculty have submitted projects which are available as part of the Summer Research Experience. We advise reviewing the Available Projects on the SRE webpage prior to completing an application. We also encourage you to reach out to the Summer Research Faculty for more information and details about their summer projects in advance of submitting your application.

How do I apply to be part of the Summer Research Experience? 

Interested Students must submit an Application Form. As part of the application processyou will be asked to rank your project preferences from the Available Projects. Participation in the program involves a match process, so we encourage you to reach out to faculty to discuss your interest in their work in advance of submitting your application.

When are applications due? 

Summer Research Experience Applications are due on February 2, 2021.

How competitive are the summer research opportunities?

 The Summer Research Experience is competitive and selective. The number of students accepted into the program is dependent on the number of available projects. Typically each project matches two students to a project. However in past years many faculty have invited more that two students to join their research team. Last year, nearly 50 students participated in approximately 20 faculty driven projects.

Is it important to reach out to faculty leading the research before applying for a spot on their research team?

We strongly encourage you to reach out to faculty before applying for a spot on their research team. While it is not a requirement, we believe that being knowledgeable about the faculty mentor expectations and nature of the research will help you identify a project that best aligns with your interest and expectations. Additionally, this will allow faculty to get to know you, which is important considering that faculty preferences are a component of the matching process.

What options for research there are outside of benchwork? (For Example: I’m interested in social issues and healthcare accessibility) 

Many projects submitted by faculty do not involve laboratory benchwork. Projects in areas of population health and healthcare accessibility have been the subject of studies in past years. The list of available projects includes options that should be of interestto you.

Is participation in research prior to the 2nd year a prerequisite for any future research participation at the Burrell College?

The Summer Research Experience is not a requirement for future research opportunities at the College. However, it is a requirement if you plan to pursue the Distinction in Research.

Is research still being conducted during the pandemic? 

Last Spring, the College implemented COVID-19 precautions that conformed with NM State public health recommendations at requirements. At that time, access to the BioScience Research Laboratory was limited to faculty researchers which allowed multiple projects to continue through the summer at a reduced building capacity. We also suspended face-to-face human subjects research in the Human Physiology Laboratory since close contact between researchers and human research subjects could present a COVID risk to both parties. Our original goal was to begin a phased restoration of all activities in our Research Laboratories in the 4th quarter of 2020. Unfortunately, the current pandemic wave has delayed our progress towards this goal. Currently, our Institutional Review Board is reviewing COVID safe practices submitted by principal investigators of projects that were disrupted by the pandemic and we are preparing to begin reopening the Human Physiology Laboratory and  expanding access to the BioScience Research Laboratory in the coming months.  This includes providing access to faculty and student researchers while maintaining COVID safe practices.

Are there opportunities for research on surgical research, plastics research, andwound healing?

Available projects for 2021 do not include opportunities directly related to these areas.  Some of our students have found mentors during the 3rd and 4th year with interest in these areas.

How many different projects are available for the 2021 Summer Research Experience?

There are a total of 19 available faculty projects for Summer 2021. This is similar to the number of available projects from past years.

Will Summer research be conducted in person during the current pandemic?

We are planning for an in person Summer Research Experience.

Is the research conducted mostly during the summer or will students need to allocate time during the school year as well?

The Summer Research Experience is a six-week full time commitment. Student involvement in research during the academic year is optional and should not interfere with your academic program requirements. Faculty understand that you should focus on your coursework during academic year.

How do I get connected with research faculty?

Our faculty take great pride in being accessible.   We encourage you to review the available projects and conduct the faculty member by email. Our website provides additional guidance for “Finding a Mentor”.

I would like to go home this summer and still do research at another institution. Is this possible?

Some of our students in the past have successfully competed for summer NIH research fellowships for medical students at other research institutions. In such instances, the College endorsed the activity. We caution against other arrangements and do not endorse informal arrangements with faculty or researchers at other institutions that do not have a formal affiliation with the Burrell College. Any student considering research outside of the Burrell College should contact the Office of Research & Sponsored Programs.