OK-INBRE Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP)

Program Dates: May 20 - July 23, 2024

SURP application

Deadline - February 12, 2024

Before you apply:
Review the qualification criteria and eligible institutions
Write your Personal Statement (you will upload the text of your personal statement into a text box within the application)
Save your transcript(s) as a PDF(s) (unofficial transcripts accepted)
Have the contact information for your references.  Each identified reference will receive an email from surp@ouhsc.edu requesting a recommendation for the student.  The applicant will receive a notice once the recommendations have been submitted.

If you have any questions regarding your application or the OK-INBRE SURP, please do not hesitate to contact us at okinbre@ouhsc.edu.

Program Goals

The OK-INBRE SURP aims to prepare and encourage undergraduate students to pursue careers in biomedical research or health related sciences.  The program introduces outstanding undergraduate students to intensive, hands-on research experiences in an experienced biomedical research lab.  The faculty mentor, graduate students, and laboratory technicians work very closely with the undergraduate student, teaching methods and techniques while allowing the student to assume responsibility for the project. At the end of the program, students write an abstract and create a poster for their project, then participate in a poster judging competition with other summer students from the various OUHSC SURPs.  On the final day, students show off their progress at a poster session to the research community. Students participating in our intensive programs receive generous support to allow pursuit of their research activities full-time (40 hours/week) without distraction.  Students will be selected on a competitive basis.

The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC) hosts five summer undergraduate research programs: OK-INBRE, SURE, CURE, CRISP, DiCR and NARCH.  To find out more about all SURP programs offered by OUHSC, visit the OUHSC SURP page.  Each program has its own application. 

OK-INBRE SURP Qualifications

Applicants must be a student enrolled in at least six credit hours at one of the following institutions during the spring semester prior to the summer program: University of Central Oklahoma, Northeastern State University, Northwestern Oklahoma State University, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, Southwestern Oklahoma State University, Cameron University, Langston University, East Central University, Rogers State University, University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, Oklahoma Panhandle State University, Oklahoma City Community College, Tulsa Community College, Redlands Community College or College of the Muscogee Nation.

Applicants must have completed at least 30 hours/2 years of undergraduate study by the summer term and exhibit a record of high academic achievement in science coursework including laboratories if applicable.

Students who graduate in the spring prior to the summer term are eligible to apply. Students who graduate in December prior to the summer term are not eligible to participate.

Students accepted to a graduate or professional school by the application deadline are not eligible to apply. An applicant who is accepted into the OK-INBRE SURP and is subsequently admitted to a graduate or professional school is still eligible to participate.

Students may only participate in OK-INBRE SURP two times.

Pre-SURP Training

Community college students as well as any other interested students will participate in a biotech “boot camp” during the first week of the program hosted by Oklahoma City Community College. Skills taught include lab safety and etiquette, notebook keeping, pipetting, media and solution prep, aseptic technique, electrophoresis, plasmid prep and manipulation, PCR, basic mammalian cell culture, protein purification, ELISA. The program content of the boot camp may change depending on the backgrounds of the students accepted into the program. Students will earn two hours of college credit for participation in the boot camp.

Lab Location and Employment

Our goal is to match the student biomedical research interests with a faculty mentor lab who has related interests with the overarching goal of exposing students to dynamic, cutting-edge research training projects that have been successful in the biomedical arena.  Because the OK-INBRE program is funded by the National Institutes of Health, research projects submitted by mentors are biomedical in nature.  Possible research areas include Aging, Autoimmunity/Immunology, Biochemistry/Molecular Biology, Cancer/Cell Cycle Biology, Diabetes/Metabolism, Microbiology/Bacteriology, and Neuroscience.

If there is not a specific faculty member identified as a preferred mentor on the student application (which is optional), the student can identify an institution, campus, or geographic region for the summer research experience.  Each selected student will be provided a description of their research project and mentor biosketch. 

The student will be hired as a temporary employee of OUHSC. The program provides $5,000 summer salary for the student and provides the mentor lab with $2,200 for laboratory supplies.  The student is responsible for all living expenses, parking fees, travel to the mentor lab, etc. The scheduled work hours will be determined by the faculty mentor, but typically will be from 8am – 5pm, depending on the type of work being performed in the lab. Because this is full-time employment, it is expected that any other employment will not interfere with the scheduled work time in the lab. The same is applicable to any courses being taken during the summer.

Accepted students must complete documentation of eligibility to be employed in the United States. This will include a background check, IRS form I-9 and any required supporting documentation, and IRS form W4.

Weekly educational enrichment meetings are held to discuss research-related skills, career opportunities, preparation for graduate school, research poster design and other topics.