The FBRI Molecular Visualization SURF program is a 10-week long summer program that gives students the opportunity to participate in hypothesis-driven independent research at Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC in Roanoke, Virginia. Students will participate in a weekly workshop series to provide hands-on experience in the cutting edge imaging technologies housed within FBRI to understand appropriate application of each technology in understanding biological processes. This program encompasses a full-time, 40-hour week schedule and supports Molecular Visualization SURF students with a $4,000 stipend. Housing will also be provided to those students that need it.

The FBRI Molecular Visualization SURF program’s objectives are:

  • To expose undergraduate students to the broad scope of molecular visualization technologies available to interrogate fundamentals of biological processes in health and disease
  • To provide hands-on research experiences within the multidisciplinary environment of the FBRI where application of these cutting edge imaging technologies is applied in fundamental and translational research
  • To expose students to experiential learning early in their careers to increase the likelihood of long-term careers in STEM fields
  • To develop and foster creative problem solving skills in early career students and train students in appropriate application of techniques, experimental design, and data analysis
  • To provide training and experiences that foster improved science communication at all levels and to all audiences

Areas of research for FBRI Molecular Visualization SURF students will include:

  • Cancer biology
  • Cardiovascular biology
  • Drug discovery and development
  • Immunology
  • Neuroscience
  • Virology and infectious disease

In addition to hands-on research projects, FBRI Molecular Visualization SURF students will participate in:

  • Weekly Molecular Visualization workshops by Virginia Tech Faculty on each imaging technology
  • Courses on preparing for a future career in science
  • Mentoring on science communication and presentation skills
  • The Virginia Tech Summer Undergraduate Research Symposium
  • Peer mentoring from VT graduate students
  • Social and cultural activities with fellow summer research students


Learn more about Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC Institute here!

Learn more about faculty research areas participating in Molecular Visualization SURF at FBRI here!