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Undergraduates

BSGCT Undergraduate Research Bursary

The purpose of the award is to give research experience to undergraduates and to encourage them to consider a career in scientific research. The award provides support for the student at a rate of up to £250 per week for a period of between 6 and 8 weeks.

Applications for the 2024 BSGCT Undergraduate Research Bursary are now closed. The next round will open in 2025.

Guidelines:

These guidelines describe the BSGCT Undergraduate Research Bursary Programme and are for the 2024 round only (https://www.bsgct.org/undergraduates).  Please read the website and these guidelines before making an enquiry or completing an application form.

 

The closing date for receipt of applications is 5pm Thursday 25th April 2024.

 

Nature of the award:

The purpose of the award is to give experience of research to undergraduates with research potential and to encourage them to consider a career in scientific research. The award provides support for the student at a rate of £250 per week for a period of between 6 and 8 weeks.

 

Eligibility: 

                                                

  • Applications are made by researchers who are members of the British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy (BSGCT) on behalf of a named undergraduate student.

  • Researchers in the field of gene therapy at universities and research institutions within the UK are eligible to apply.

  • Projects must be focused on gene and cell therapy. Subject areas include non-viral gene therapy, viral gene therapy, immunotherapy, monogenic and hereditary disease, stem cells, cancer and oncolytics, cardiovascular/ocular disease and vectorology or genetic vaccines. Postdoctoral researchers and new lecturers, early in their careers are also encouraged to apply, and should note this on the application form.

  • Only one application should be submitted by a supervisor.

  • Preference will be given to host supervisors who have not previously been awarded a BSGCT URB grant in previous rounds of the scheme.

  • Students will take up the award during the summer vacation in their penultimate year (i.e. 2/3 or 3/4) of their degree. Applications on behalf of first- or final-year undergraduates, or graduates, will not be considered.

  • Mature students are eligible to apply, but must not have a previous degree in any subject.

  • Students must be registered at a UK institution for the majority of their undergraduate science degree.

  • Bursaries will not be awarded for projects that are a part of degree work or for work which will take place overseas.

Adjudication:

Adjudication will be advised by independent expert referees, selected by the BSGCT board. The scheme is competitive and applications will be judged primarily on the quality and merits of the student, as well as the scientific merit of the project and the experience the student will have whilst working on it. Preference will be given to:

  • Students who are expected to achieve a 1st or 2.1 degree, who are considering a career in research, but who have not yet had an opportunity to experience research.

  • Research projects that have a clearly defined objective which is achievable by the
    student in the time available.

  • The educational value of the project and the host laboratory environment.

  • Projects which give scope for thought and initiative on the part of the student and do not use the student as a general assistant.

How to apply:

The application must be made by the person who will supervise the research and not the student. However, supervisors should discuss the project in detail with the nominated student who should also contribute to the project design. The application form includes space for a CV for the nominated student and a supporting statement from the student’s academic tutor. These should be included in the form and not attached separately.  Applications must be on the new form for 2024 which can be downloaded from our website –https://www.bsgct.org/undergraduates.

 

Awards are not offered directly to individual researchers but to the institutions to which they belong. By signing the application form, the Head of Department signifies their willingness for the award to be administered by their department, and agrees to the Conditions of Award. Awards are made formally to the institution on the understanding that the investigation complies with the safety and ethical regulations of the institution and that the institution will ensure that the requirements of all relevant regulatory authorities will be met before the work commences.

 

Completed applications with all the relevant signatures should be sent by email to board@bsgct.org with URB 2024 in the subject heading.

 

The closing date for applications is 5pm Thursday 25th April 2024 and all applications will be acknowledged by e-mail to Supervisors by 5pm on Friday 26th April 2024. Decisions will be communicated to Supervisors by 16th May 2024.

 

If you need to withdraw your application, you must let us know as soon as possible on the email above.  Please bear in mind that we are a small central team and that processing each application takes time.  If you receive alternative funding for your project, please let us know immediately so that, if necessary, we can re-allocate our funds accordingly.  We receive many more good applications than we can fund, so please help us to use our resources in the most effective way.

 

Further copies of these guidelines and application forms can be downloaded from our website: www.bsgct.org.

If you have any queries please contact us at board@bsgct.org.

Previous Winners

The BSGCT would like to congratulate the successful applicants for our Undergraduate Research Placement Scheme.

2024

Vickie Man Ki Wang, Imperial College London, who undertook a summer project entitled “Investigating the role of miRNA targets on maturity of stem cell derived induced hepatocytes” under the supervision of Dr S. Tamir Rashid at Imperial College London.

Grace Rachel Humphreys, University College London, who undertook a summer project entitled “Determining the optimal formulation of LNPs for hepatocyte transfection” under the supervision of Dr Foad Rouhani at The Francis Crick Institute.

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