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National Science Foundation

Alejandro Akrouh - Neurosciences

David Anderson - Immunology

Prachi Gopal Bagadia - Immunology

David Antoine Anderson Baranger - Neurosciences

Kirsten Brenner - Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Melissa Marie Budelier - Biochemistry

Amy Kate Clippinger - Neurosciences

Melissa Cook - Immunology

Rebecca Lynn CunninghamDevelopmental, Regenerative & Stem Cell Biology​

Tara Enders - Plant Biology

Vincent FasanelloEvolution, Ecology and Population Biology

Anshu Priyanthi Gounder - Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Percy Griffin - Molecular Cell Biology​

Sarem Seifu Hailemariam - Molecular Cell Biology

Zuzana Kocsisova - Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Nathan D. Kopp - Human and Statistical Genetics

Brian Malpede - Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Allyson Leigh Mayer - Developmental, Regenerative and Stem Cell Biology

Lisa McLellanMolecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Ashley Muehler - Plant Biology

Elizabeth Mueller - Molecular Microbiology and Microbial Pathogenesis

Amelia Nguyen - Plant and Microbial Biosciences

Christina Marie O'Neill - Immunology

Luis Sandoval - Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Stephanie Schultz - Neurosciences

Jennette ShootsPlant and Microbial Biosciences

Matthew Singh - Neurosciences

Allison Soung - Neurosciences

Melanie Anne Sparks - Biochemistry

Cassondra Leigh Vernier - Evolution, Ecology and Population Biology

James Weagley - Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Marshall WedgerEvolution, Ecology and Population Biology

Rachel Wong - Immunology

Sara Wright - Evolution, Ecology and Population Biology

Anne Zimmerman - Plant and Microbial Biosciences​

External Fellowship Awardees
Money Matters

The 2017-2018 annual stipend is $30,000.  Stipend payments are disbursed the last working day of each month.  You will receive an email notification on how to set-up direct deposit.  If your direct deposit isn’t set-up in time, you will be notified via e-mail when checks are available to be picked up from the DBBS Division Office.

To ensure that you receive your first stipend paycheck, make certain to check in with a DBBS Finance Coordinator to complete the required payroll documents as soon as you arrive.  Documents must be completed no later than the following dates:  June 16, July 17, August 16.

The amount of your first stipend check will be prorated according to your start date.  For more information regarding stipend payments and possible tax implications please visit​.

International Students:

Please visit the WUSTL Office for International Students and Scholars (OISS) webpage for important information.  Prior to orientation, questions concerning your VISA should be directed to Bridget Coleman at 314-935-8753 or​.  International students must go to the OISS located on the Danforth campus to check-in before coming to the Division office.  Please make certain to bring all appropriate documentation when you meet with the OISS representative. 

Entering Students
National Institute of Health

Ehiole Akhirome - Developmental, Regenerative & Stem Cell Biology

Michael Bern - Immunology

Katherine Conen - Neurosciences

Jennifer Davis - Molecular Cell Biology

Vivek Durai - Immunology

Trent Evans - Molecular Cell Biology

Gary Grajales-Reyes - Immunology

Carl Hacker - Biomedical Engineering

Breanne Harty - Molecular Genetics & Genomics

Amy Herbert - Developmental, Regenerative & Stem Cell Biology

Sarah Kaufman - Neurosciences

Andrew Kraft - Neurosciences

Mariah Lawler - Biochemistry

Vivian Lee Developmental, Regenerative & Stem Cell Biology

Cheryl Leyns - Molecular Cell Biology

Dov Lerman-Sinkoff - Biomedical Engineering

Lucy Li - Molecular Microbiology & Microbial Pathogenesis

Stephen Linderman - Biomedical Engineering

Christine Luo - Molecular Genetics & Genomics

Cates Mallaney - Human & Statistical Genetics

Cristina Mazuski - Neurosciences

Hannah Miller - Immunology

Anish Mitra - Neurosciences

Patrick Olson - Molecular Microbiology & Microbial Pathogenesis

Eugene Park - Immunology

Chelsea Parker Harp - Immunology

Caitlin Purman - Molecular Genetics & Genomics

Michelle Robinette - Immunology

Emilie Russler-Germain - Immunology

Sarah Smith - Neurosciences

Benjamin Solomon - Immunology

Avik Som - Biomedical Engineering

Caitlin Spaulding - Molecular Microbiology & Microbial Pathogenesis

Calvin Stephens - Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Samantha Van Hove - Molecular Cell Biology

External Fellowship Awardees

Intent to Graduate Form must be filed:

December 22, 2016 for May 19, 2017 Graduation

August 1, 2017 for August 17, 2017 Graduation

October 2, 2017 for December 20, 2017 Graduation

Final Dissertation must be electronically submitted to the Graduate School:

April 24, 2017 for May 19, 2017 Graduation

September 5, 2017 for August 17, 2017 Graduation

January 2, 2018 for December 20, 2017 Graduation

Getting Ready to Graduate

The long awaited release of "The Lab: Avoiding Research Misconduct" is now available for viewing on the ORI web site. The video simulation allows users to assume the role of a graduate student, post-doc, research administrator, or PI and make decisions that affect the integrity of research.

“On Being a Scientist: Responsible Conduct in Research” National Academy of Sciences Committee on Science, Engineering and Public Policy

Website for the Hastings Center

General Refs
Fall 2016

Andy Geisse Career Talk
Friday, Sept. 16, 2016, 10:15 am, McMillen Lab 311, Danforth Campus
More info:

Boston Consulting Group
Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016, 2 pm, FLTC 207
More info: 

The Influence of Graduate Teaching and Volunteerism on Academic and Non-academic Career Paths
Friday, Oct. 21, 2016, 1:30 pm, Connor Auditorium
More info: 

Paul R. Eisenberg Career Talk
Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2016, 3:00 pm, Cori Auditorium
Register and more info:

Precision Medicine Pathway Career Panel
Monday, Dec. 5, 2016, 3:00 pm, McDonnell Sciences 426
More info:

Career Talks

Fall 2016 Events

Ted Drewes Ice Cream Social
Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016, McDonnell Sciences Courtyard, 4:30 pm

Postdoc-PI Happy Hour to Celebrate Postdoc Appreciation Week!
Monday, Sept. 19, 2016, FLTC Hearth, 4:30 pm

Career Transition Fellowship Panel for Postdocs
Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016, 1 pm, FLTC 205

Halloween Happy Hour
Tuesday, Oct. 25, 2016, FLTC 214, 4:00 pm

Career Talk & Coffee Hour (Danforth Campus): Dr. Arlene Taich of the Career Center will lead a discussion regarding career paths for postdocs
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016, Green Hall L0159 (Danforth Campus), 4:30 pm

Free Yoga Class for Postdocs Courtesy of Wash U Postdoc Society
Wednesday, December 7, 2016, FLTC 213, 5:30 pm

Postdoc Holiday Party
Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2016, FLTC Hearth, 4:30 pm

Spring 2016 Events

Postdoc New Year Happy Hour
Thursday, Jan. 7, 2016, FLTC Hearth, 5 pm

St. Louis Blues Hockey Game
Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016, Scottrade Center, 7 pm

Coffee Hour - Teaching Skills: Drs. Chad Rogers & Jessica Williams will talk about teaching during their postdocs 
Monday, March 21, 2016, FLTC 213, 9 am

Immigration Seminar
Tuesday, April 5, 2016, Erlanger Auditorium, 1:30 pm

Free Bowling courtesy of Wash U Postdoc Society
Thursday, April 28, 2016, Moolah Lanes, 6:30 pm

International Happy Hour
Wednesday, May 18, 2016, FLTC Hearth, 5 pm

Postdoc Society Events
Leaves of Absence

Students making satisfactory academic progress may request permission from the Director of their academic program for a leave of absence from graduate school of up to one year. The Director, in consultation with the program’s steering committee, will decide whether a leave will be granted. Leave will not normally be approved for a student who is not making satisfactory academic progress, or who wishes to take more than one year off. Students do not receive stipend support while on leave; however, Division payment for health insurance may be negotiated when the leave is taken for medical reasons. Students contemplating leaves should see their student coordinators to discuss health benefits and other details.

Students who take a leave without prior approval or who do not resume study at the end of the time granted must reapply for admission in order to return to the Division.

Sick Leave and Other Leave . Students may continue to receive stipends for up to 12 calendar days of sick leave per year. Sick leave may be used for the medical conditions related to pregnancy and childbirth. 

New Child Leave. Students also may receive stipends for up to 8 weeks of New Child leave per year for the adoption or the birth of a child. Either parent is eligible for New Child leave.

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DGSP Academic Progress
Other Support

Time Off Policy
Student appointments to the Division are considered to be 52-week appointments and do not follow academic vacation schedules. Planned absences should be approved by the advisor and unplanned absences reported to them. “Advisors” in the graduate years are program directors, rotation mentors, TA course master and/or thesis mentors, as is appropriate. For MSTP students during their medical training, the Director of the MSTP program will serve as the supervisor. The total amount of excused absence should be consistent with that of academic employees of the University. This would include: University approved holidays; 22 days of vacation; and 12 days of sick time off annually. Sick time off and vacation are not carried over from year to year, are not accrued (available from time of appointment) and are not subject to payout at the termination of the graduate student appointment. Therefore, informal monitoring of this time off by advisors and students will normally be sufficient. For students in Ph.D. training, disputes between advisors and students should first be addressed by the Program Director. For MSTP students in medical training, disputes will be resolved by consensus between the MSTP Director and the clinical advisor. 

If you decide to travel and be away from the lab for any reason other than to perform research or attend a scientific meeting, your time away from work will be considered a vacation. Should you exceed the allotted 22 days of vacation per fiscal year, you may be required to take an unpaid leave of absence. Students who travel outside of the US are not covered by student health; however, travel insurance can be purchased and information is available at Student Health Services.

Special note for International Students: Due to increased security measures, the process of renewing student visas has been prolonged in several countries. In most instances, it is not necessary to travel home to renew a visa. If you decide to travel to home, please contact the International Office to obtain the required signature of an official representative on your I-20 form prior to traveling out of the country.

New Child Leave
Students may also receive stipends for up to 8 weeks of New Child leave per year for the adoption or birth of a child. Either parent is eligible for New Child leave.

EMail & Internet Access
All students are provided with email accounts and access to the Internet free of charge.  Most of the Division's communications about events, changes in policy, courses, etc. are sent by Wustl email.  Please see​​ for more information.

Emergency Short-term Loans
Students (PhD students and MSTP students in PhD years) may apply for a short-term emergency loan through the Graduate CenterShort-term loans are available for $500 or less to eligible students for a short period of time.  Short-term loans are billed to your student account and must be repaid in one month.  Please contact the Graduate Center, located on the 3rd floor of the Danforth University Center, in Room 300, 9am – 5pm, Monday - Friday.

MSTP Students in ME years may apply for similar loans through the Medical Alumni Fund.  Please contact WUSOM Office of Student Financial Planning 362-3045 or

Verifications for Federal Student Lenders
It is not necessary for students to request enrollment or degree verification from the Office of the University Registrar or the School of Medicine Registrar for federal student loan deferments. The lenders and servicing agencies for federal student loans download this information directly from the NSC on a regular basis.

Note that the anticipated degree date reported by the Clearinghouse to your loan lenders prior to your actual graduation is a calculated value based upon your year in school and enrollment status. They use it to project when you may no longer be in school and entering repayment on your loans.

Please contact The Registrar’s office for further questions:​

DGSP Administrative Policy
Teaching Assistantships

All DBBS students are required to TA at for at least one-semester, documented by registering for Teaching Practice in Biology and Biomedical Sciences (Dept. L41, BIO 5915, Section 01, Credit=1.0).  This is typically completed during the second year of graduate training.

As teaching assistants (TAs), students:
  • lead discussions and/or problem-solving sessions
  • prepare and deliver one or more lectures as part of the regular lecture schedule
  • provide regular instruction in a laboratory environment
The primary focus of the course is teaching performance, but participation also includes regular meetings between teaching assistants and instructors of the courses (course masters) they are co-teaching regarding:
  • expectations of the course master 
  • evaluation of their performance
  • discussion of other matters 
As part of DBBS TA training TAs are required to:
  • Attend the University’s Orientation for Graduate Teaching Assistants (held on the Danforth Campus in the middle of August)
  • Read the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Teaching Assistant Handbook (received at orientation).
  • Complete three 90-minute workshops, each covering a different topic, offered by the WUSTL Teaching Center-- The Teaching Center's Basic TA-Training Workshops will introduce graduate students to effective pedagogical methods.  A new topic will be offered each month, September-November and February-April.  IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT STUDENTS START ATTENDING WORKSHOPS PRIOR TO OR DURING THE SEMESTERS OF THE TEACHING ASSIGNMENT.  THE TA WILL NOT RECEIVE A GRADE UNTIL PARTICIPATION OF 3 WORKSHOPS HAS BEEN RECORDED.
  • Complete a written evaluation of the teaching experience. 
TAs will receive a grade at the conclusion of their assistantship only when the following has been completed:
  • Participation in a minimum of 3 different workshops
  • TA teaching experience evaluation
  • Course master evaluation (Division office requests this) 
The student is required to carry out another teaching assistantship if the grade is unsatisfactory.


Division students interested in a teaching career may apply for a second assistantship through the Department of Biology’s Second TA Fellowship Program.   These TA opportunities provide a nominal fellowship for the teaching assistantship.  Before applying, students must discuss their application with their thesis mentor and obtain their mentor's aprroval and the Program Director's approval.  The Chair of the Department of Biology can provide students with more information about this program.

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DGSP Degree Requirements

The Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences is a degree program of Washington University’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences (DBBS) is responsible for graduate education in the biomedical and biological sciences at Washington University. DBBS is organized into twelve academic programs, each representing a different scientific area. Students receive current guidelines for these programs upon matriculation, and periodic updates as changes occur. Those guidelines provide students with policies, procedures, and requirements specific to the academic program in which they are enrolled. This document consists of the policies and procedures that apply to the graduate education of all Division students, regardless of their program affiliation. The hallmark of the Division is flexibility, and students should always feel free to explore the possibility of individualizing their programs where appropriate.

The Division presently includes over 500 faculty; ~475 students working toward the Ph.D. degree; and ~190 students working toward the combined M.D./Ph.D. degree in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP). Member departments of the Division include the Department of Biology in the College of Arts and Sciences, and the seven preclinical departments of the School of Medicine, namely: Neuroscience, Biochemistry & Molecular Biophysics, Cell Biology & Physiology, Molecular Genetics, Developmental Biology, Molecular Microbiology, and Pathology & Immunology. In addition, there are members of the Division faculty located in the Departments of Chemistry, Psychology and Brain Sciences, Physics, Earth and Planetary Sciences, and the School of Engineering on the Danforth Campus and in the clinical departments of the School of Medicine

  • The chief administrative body of the Division is the Executive Council, composed of the Heads of the eight member departments, the Departments of Chemistry and of Biomedical Engineering, two members of clinical departments, the Associate Dean for Graduate Education, the Director of the MSTP, and the Director of Ph.D. Admissions and Recruiting. The Chair of the Council is the executive officer of the Division.
  • The Associate Dean oversees day to day operations of the Division and chairs the Program and Student Affairs Committee, which consists of the directors of the twelve academic programs.
  • Each of the academic programs is managed by a Steering Committee. A committee of faculty oversees the recruitment and admission activities of DBBS.

Please consult the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Bulletin when Graduate School policy is referred to in this guide (all students receive a copy of the Bulletin prior to matriculation). ( M.D./Ph.D. students should refer to the School of Medicine Bulletin (received by those students prior to matriculation) for policies governing the medical phase of their graduate education.

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DGSP Introduction
Conflict of Interest Policy for Research

Research funding from sources that have intellectual property interests in the research, or in which the PI has personal financial interest, may create a real or perceived conflict of interest, given the dual roles of the principal investigator in obtaining funding for the lab and as a mentor for graduate students. Issues of paramount importance are (i) the ability to publish results in a timely fashion; (ii) the ability to communicate research results openly, especially to members of the thesis committee; and (iii) academic rights to publish and speak freely, especially as related to a graduate student’s thesis and defense.

Statement of policy.

The following principles should apply to any situation involving a graduate student supported by funding that is associated with a confidentiality agreement:

    The limitations and nature of the confidentiality agreement must be fully disclosed to and approved by the student, the thesis committee, and the DBBS Associate Dean for Graduate Affairs;
    The confidentiality agreement must not place an unreasonable burden or delay in publication or reporting at scientific meetings;
    The confidentiality agreement must not delay the writing or defense of the thesis;

Examples of inappropriate projects:
1. Research involving chemical compounds whose structure or mechanism of action is proprietary and failure to disclose would preclude peer-reviewed publication.

2. Research involving genes or proteins whose original or modified sequences are proprietary and failure to disclose would preclude peer-reviewed publication.

3. Research involving organisms or cell lines that are proprietary and failure to disclose would preclude peer-reviewed publication.

4. Research in which the thesis advisor has a significant personal or corporate financial interest.

Process for handling potential conflicts of interest involving students
If a faculty member receives industry-sponsored research support that entails a confidentiality agreement or has a personal financial interest related to the thesis work, the following process must be followed in order for the graduate student to be supported by this source:

As soon as the proposed arrangement becomes a concrete plan, the faculty member and student involved discuss and sign an appropriately specific disclosure statement that is based on a standard template (see below).

The signed statement should be submitted to the DBBS Associate Dean for Graduate Education, who will review the material and forward a provisional recommendation to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research.

If approved by the Vice Chancellor for Research, the student may proceed with this research and receive industry-sponsored support pending final approval by the student’s thesis committee.

Once a thesis committee is established (or at the next scheduled thesis committee meeting if one already exists), copies of the disclosure statement are provided to the committee. The committee meets with the faculty advisor and student initially present and decides whether the constraints imposed by the confidentiality agreement are acceptable.

The thesis committee chair forwards its recommendation to the DBBS Associate Dean for Graduate Education by indicating on the disclosure statement whether or not the thesis committee approves the arrangement.

The DBBS Associate Dean for Graduate Education reviews the material and forwards a final recommendation to the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research, where a final decision is made.

Disclosure statement for graduate students
Approved by Executive Council, DBBS
March, 2009
(Template; to be customized by the P.I. before presenting to the student)


From: PI
To: Graduate Student

This memo is to inform you that I intend to support $X of your stipend with funds provided by company Y. In accepting this support, I am obliged to sign a confidentiality agreement that puts constraints on the release of proprietary information that may pertain to your research. Research findings generated in whole or in part by this support must be reviewed by company Y prior to public release by presentation at scientific meetings or submission for publication (abstracts or manuscripts). According to the terms of the grant, the maximum time the results may be held for review is Z days. It is my understanding that this delay will be the only restriction on publication of your research. [OR, if chemical structure or other information remains proprietary, spell out the specifics.] For your protection, this arrangement will be discussed with and must receive approval by your thesis committee, the DBBS Associate Dean for Graduate Education, and the Vice Chancellor for Research or his/her designee.

Signature of PI:__________________________________ Date:____________________

Signature of Trainee:_____________________________ Date:____________________

The thesis committee has reviewed the relevant material and [ ] approves [ ] disapproves of the proposed arrangement.

Signature of thesis committee chair:__________________________ Date:____________________

The Associate Dean for Graduate Education has reviewed the relevant material and [ ] approves [ ] disapproves of the proposed arrangement.

Signature of Associate Dean:________________________________ Date:____________________

The Vice Chancellor for Research has reviewed the relevant material and [ ] approves [ ] disapproves of the proposed arrangement.

Signature of Vice Chancellor of Research:_______________________ Date:____________________

(Signed copy should be returned to the Associate Dean for Graduate Education, DBBS, Campus Box 8226)


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DGSP Degree Requirements

DBBS students must complete a minimum of 36 units of course credit for the Doctor of Philosophy degree, and must maintain a “B” average. Each of the Division’s programs has different course requirements; individual program guidelines provide specific details. However, each student must register continuously every semester from matriculation through thesis completion. Since the required courses do not total 36 units, DBBS students also register for a research course (BIO 590). Grades for research courses are recorded as “satisfactory” or “unsatisfactory” rather than as letter grades. “Incomplete” grades are not acceptable, and students are required to complete their assignments on a timely basis. Grades in core courses must be a B- or above and students must maintain a B (3.0) overall average. Normally, students will complete 36 credit hours by the end of the first semester of their second year.

All Division students are required to complete a one-semester course in teaching practice and a one-semester course in the ethical aspects of conducting biological research.

English Requirement for International Students. Any graduate student beginning studies in the Division who did not earn an undergraduate degree from a university in a country in which English is the primary native language, must demonstrate a satisfactory knowledge of, and facility with, spoken and written English. This involves examinations administered by Washington University’s English Language Programs. In order to remain in good standing, any courses recommended by the ELP Program must be taken during the first calendar year the student is in the Division. After successful completion of these courses, the steering committee of the student's academic program is responsible for monitoring their English language proficiency. The committee’s evaluation is based on the student’s ability to successfully complete graduate course work and to communicate effectively in the laboratory, in journal clubs, and on the qualifying examination. The steering committee may, at any time, require the student to complete additional course work recommended by the ELP.

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DGSP Degree Requirements
Sling Health Network
Sling Health Network is a bioengineering design and entrepreneurship incubator founded in 2012 at Washington University in St. Louis. Students, faculty, staff, and St. Louis entrepreneurs team up to tackle unmet needs in healthcare delivery and clinical medicine.
Our group's objectives include:
  • To develop a culture of innovation at Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine
  • To teach engineering and medical students the skills and processes needed to invent and implement new biomedical technologies
  • To develop novel medical devices targeting unmet clinical needs
Organizations & Campus Groups - Graduate Students
Instructions for Submission

Abstracts will be accepted from January 13, 2017-February 13, 2017. One submission per person please. This deadline will not be extended.

  • Electronic submissions only.
  • Submit abstracts here:
  • Abstracts may be submitted for either a judged or unjudged poster. Reminder: You must have 6 months of WU postdoc experience in your current lab to submit for a judged poster.
  • The title and abstract will be posted online and printed in the symposium program. Please review and spell check before submitting.
Postdoc Symposium
Abstract Details
  • Abstracts must be 1800 characters or less (about 250 words or less).
  • Abstracts may be submitted on any topic or in any STEM field.
  • Please do not use figures, tables, or graphs.
  • Please do not include references, citations, or funding sources.
  • The abstract submitted should be for your current postdoctoral research project. The abstract should focus on your personal scientific contributions to the lab and your specific postdoctoral research project, though it may also include general information about the lab and its activities. Please do not submit a standard lab abstract. 
  • Please use clear, simple language and a general vocabulary that can be understood by anyone.  Symposium attendees represent a variety of departments, fields, and backgrounds. Please write so that all can understand.
  • Abstracts will be posted online for 2-3 weeks around the time of the symposium. Please make sure you do not include confidential information or data that cannot be posted online.
Postdoc Symposium
Fall 2016

September 2016 

What to Look for When Searching for a Postdoc Position
Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016, 12 pm, Holden Auditorium
Register & more info: 

Citations & Opportunites for Graduate Students*
Thursday, Sept. 15, 2016, 1 pm, Erlanger Auditorium
Register & more info: 

How to Keep a Good Research Notebook*
Thursday, Sep. 22, 2016, 1 pm, Erlanger Auditorium
Register & more info: 
Communicating Science 2016 Symposium
Monday, Sept. 26-Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016, EPNEC
Individual Development Plan (IDP) Workshop*
Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016, 1 pm, Erlanger Auditorium

October 2016

Grant Resources for STEM
Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016, 4 pm, DUC 300, Danforth Campus
Register & more info: 

Individual Development Plan (IDP) Workshop
Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016, 1 pm, Holden Auditorium
Register and more info:  

November 2016

8 Ways to Successfully Navigate NIH Peer Review and Get a Fellowship Grant
Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016, 1 pm, Holden Auditorium
Versatile PhD Workshop: Session 1
Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016, 4 pm, DUC 300, Danforth Campus

Versatile PhD Workshop: Session 2
Thurs., Nov. 10, 2016, 4 pm, DUC 300, Danforth CampusNov. 10, 2016, 4 pm, DUC 300, Danforth Campus

December 2016

NIH Peer Review Briefing for Basic Research Applicants and Reviewers
Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, 1 pm, Cori Auditorium
More info:

Research: What's Leadership Got to Do with It?
Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016, 3:30 pm, Wohl Auditorium
More info:

The NINDS Diversity Career Development K22 Award: Tips for Preparing Your Application (Webinar for Postdocs)
Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016, 2 pm, online
Professional Development Programming
Abstract Submission Criteria
  • You must have an official university title of either Postdoctoral Research Associate or Postdoctoral  Research Scholar at both the time of submission and on March 30th.
  • Poster judging is optional and postdocs may present “works in progress” posters. 
  • To submit for a judged poster, you must have at least 6 months of postdoctoral experience in your current lab.
  • Judged posters may be set up the day before the symposium, and must be displayed and ready for judging by 8 am on March 30, 2017.
Postdoc Symposium
Poster Selection & Judging

All posters will be accepted unless we have space constraints. Poster judging is a two-part process and all judged posters must be set up by 8 am on March 30, 2017. Part 1 will occur prior to the Symposium. The poster judges will review and evaluate the posters without postdocs present, and narrow it down to the top posters, approximately 10. The judges will then visit the top posters during the poster session. A formal presentation is not required - you are expected to present and discuss your research with all those who visit your poster. (Poster judges may or may not identify themselves.) The suggested judging criteria for the posters are:

  • Clarity – poster and oral explanation are understandable to a non-expert
  • Significance of the research
  • Originality of research design, technique, focus or idea
  • Interest to a general scientific audience
  • Poster is well designed and well organized with fonts in an appropriate size, an appropriate number of graphics, etc.
  • Information can be understood and followed (in a basic sense) without a person present
  • Presenter can succinctly explain their research
  • Presenter can address questions appropriately
  • Presenter can relate their research to the “big picture” and provide relevance

The Best Poster Award will be announced via email after the symposium.

Postdoc Symposium
Talk Selection Process

An Abstract Review Committee comprised of Washington University faculty will review and select the five postdoc talks. The talk abstracts will be chosen based on:

  • Significance
  • Originality
  • Clarity of abstract
  • Interest to a general scientific audience and
  • Illustrating the breadth and diversity of our scientific community

The goal of the talks is to showcase great science and illustrate the range of research areas of our postdocs at Washington University.

Postdoc Symposium
Defense Packet

Below are all the forms that need to be completed. You still must see your Coordinator for additional items and forms.

MSTP students - please see the MSTP office for instructions.

Visit​ to access the following:
 -Dissertation and Thesis Template
 -Doctoral Dissert​ation Guide

Dissertation Defense Committee Form​

Intent to Graduate Form - filed via WEBSTAC
​Survey of Earned Doctorates Form
Payroll/Student Health Form
Job Survey
Graduating Student Survey

Getting Ready to Graduate


See your student coordinator at least THREE - SIX months prior to thesis examination (defense).

If you are an International student, YOU MUST see the International Office prior to setting up a defense date to discuss your Visa status and its implication.

Intent to Graduate Form - The Office of Student Records requires that you complete the Intent to Graduate Form on-line through WebSTAC, see below for graduation deadlines. If you have any problems locating or completing the form in WebSTAC, please contact the Office of Student Records at (314) 935-5959.
Read through the Doctoral Dissertatio​n Guide for formatting guidelines and other important information (found at​).
One Month Before Thesis Examination:
  • Ask your coordinator for the Dissertation Committee Form, have your program director sign the form and return form to your coordinator.
  • Submit your CV and the dissertation abstract.  (Be sure to follow the guidelines in the Doctoral Dissertation Guide booklet). Each should be initialed by the thesis advisor.
  • Email your coordinator the dissertation title, defense date, time and location of thesis examination. It is the student’s responsibility to reserve a room for the thesis examination.  (Thesis Examination information will be published in the DBBS seminar calendar online.)
  • Submit the Payroll/Student Health Form
Two Weeks Before Thesis Examination:
  • Distribute copies of dissertation and a copy of your CV to committee members electronically.  If your PDF file is too large to send by email, we advise you to use the Washington University Large File Transfer System:  It is a secure and encrypted tool for transferring large files between people and works in a similar manner to Dropbox.  Members of the Wash U community can access this system with their WUSTL Key.
    Note: Your thesis advisor should be listed as the chairperson on your title page and the date would be your degree date (May, August or December are the only options). If you have questions about permission to use published papers in your thesis, contact Nancy Pope, Associate Dean in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, 935-6848.
After Defense:
Binding Dissertation
  • If you would like to have your dissertation bound, visit  to upload your thesis and order bound copies. No copies should be ordered until after the electronic submission of a dissertation to ProQuest has been approved by the Graduate School; the pdf uploaded at should be identical to the approved pdf previously submitted to ProQuest.
  • Note: The price for binding a single dissertation begins at $25 (shipping additional). A $35 Scholar Credit will be applied to each graduating student’s SIS account approximately 30 days after their last stipend check.
  • Should your PI want a copy of your thesis, they can also use the Thesis on Demand site at their own expense. You will need to provide them with an electronic copy of your thesis to utilize this site-
  • Questions regarding dissertation binding should be directed to Andrew Richards, Director of Alumni Affairs at​.
In most cases, outpatient benefits cease the day the finished dissertation is submitted to the Graduate School, with a grace period providing emergency benefits to continue for an additional 30 days. However, students presenting their thesis in late summer months may find it necessary to pay additional fees, since the billing cycle for the previous semester ends on June 30, with the 30 day grace period extending limited coverage to July 31. Hospitalization and emergency room services only are provided during the grace period.
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Getting Ready to Graduate
What is the application fee and are fee waivers accepted?

The application fee is $45, a fraction of that at many sister institutions.

Fee waivers are granted to applicants from the following programs:
MARC, McNair, RISE, IMSD, LSAMP, PREP, PPIA, DACA students, IRT-Insitute for the Recruitment of Teachers, Target Hope, Fulbright Scholars, AmeriCorps, Vista/Peace Corps, Teach for America, Gates Millennium Scholars, Mellon Mays Graduate Initative, Ron Brown Scholars, Vietnam Education Foundation

Fee waivers are also available for:
-Washington University undergraduates
-Participants in Washington University summer bioscience research programs
-Students mentored by a DBBS Alum
-Applicants with financial need

If you think you qualify for a fee waiver, please send an email to

I was given a range of scores instead of one score after I completed the GRE Test, how do I enter my scores into the application?

If the GRE Exam date is after August 1, 2011 and the exam results are presented as a range of scores, please do not enter the scores into the application.  When the official scores have been received from ETS, enter the scores into the application. However, if the application has already been submitted, email the scores to the contact person or to and the scores will be added to the application.  If the application is complete except for the official GRE scores, submit the application and e-mail the scores when received.

How will I know if you have received all my supporting documents?

You may verify the status of all supporting materials on-line within your application by clicking on the "Check Application Status" page. The status of supporting documents is generally updated on a daily basis, however during peak season it may take several days to open and process all mail. If after December 15th your status page shows missing documents, please contact us at

May my recommenders send their letters by email or fax?

We do not accept letters of recommendation that are sent to us via Fax, Email or any attachment within the email. If your recommender is having problems with the on-line system, please have your recommender contact us at

Where do I or my recommenders send letters of recommendation that cannot be submitted on-line?

We strongly encourage all applicants to ask their recommenders to submit their letters of recommendation on-line, as it expedites the review process. If your recommenders are unable to do so the recommender needs to contact us at

It is late in the application season, and I still have not heard of any decisions regarding my application. What should I do?

If by mid-March you have not received a letter from us regarding a decision about your application, please send us an email at

How will I know if you have received all my supporting documents?

You may verify the status of all supporting materials on-line within your application. The status of supporting documents is generally updated on a daily basis, however during peak season it may take several days. If after December 15th your status page shows missing documents, please contact us at

Test Scores

Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General test is required for all applicants. Scores must be from tests taken in the last five years. The Subject test is not required. Applicants are strongly encouraged to schedule the exam early so the official scores will reach DBBS before the December 1st deadline.

Institution Code - 6912
Department Code - 0299
(Department code is located under Natural Sciences/Biological Sciences. We are listed last, after Zoology)

P.O. Box 6000
Princeton, NJ 08541-6000
Phone: 1-866-473-4373

When the official scores have been received from ETS, enter the scores into the application. However, if the application has already been submitted, email the scores to the contact person or to and the scores will be added to the application.  If the application is complete except for the official GRE scores, submit the application and e-mail the scores when received.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required of non-native speakers of English if the applicant has not earned a bachelor's or master's degree at an English-speaking institution. Scores must be from tests taken within the last two years.

Non-native speakers who earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree from a school where all instruction is in English are exempt from the TOEFL.

Institution Code - 6929
Department Code - 045
Educational Testing Services
P.O. Box 6151
Princeton, NJ 08541-6151
Phone: 1-800-468-6335
PhD Application Instructions
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