2021 Summer Camps

Computational Biology Research Camps for High School Students

Due to COVID-19, all miRcore Summer 2021 camps will be online again. Although the experience is now completely virtual for the safety of everyone involved, the students in our 2020 camps received instruction as rich and compelling as if it were in-person, proving the virtual format to be just as immersive as our typical format. Just as last year, our camps are available nationwide under these conditions.


Our camps are available for academically motivated high school students (including incoming freshmen). A unique feature of our camps is that students will be eligible to continue their learning experience with the free miRcore Volunteer Program, which meets throughout the school year online and in person. MVP students learn more about computational biology, programming, research, teamwork, and community outreach, as well as leadership.

To register for an online camp, please go to the relevant camp page.


Our online camps differ from conventional online learning platforms in terms of:

1) Being highly interactive with experienced mentors and peers
2) Our signature group research projects
Click here to read a recent publication based on a summer camp research project.
3) Diverse online bonding activities


BACKGROUND: Our summer camps serve as a platform to recruit students to the miRcore volunteer program (MVP, https://mircore.org/volunteer, started in 2011) since MVP students implement what they learn in camp to do collaborative computational research from the ground up while advocating publicly supported disease research. MVP thus promotes research and leadership skills through real-life projects inspired by precision medicine (e.g., identifying potential diagnostic RNA markers using publicly available patient data). MVP runs throughout the academic year, with multi-year participation options. MVP students keep in touch with each other through college and beyond. All our summer camps are designed to support the MVP experience but can be stand-alone.

We have extensive experience in online teaching, such as group bonding games, interactive instruction, guiding small group research through break-out sessions, all on a personal basis. Our online platform, instituted in 2015 to deliver advanced, structured contents to students outside of the Ann Arbor (including California, New York, Georgia, and Canada), has undergone continuous improvement.

Other online STEM activities: distant participation in our Annual Genes and Health Contest, remote student participation in an Annual High School Research Conference presenting posters to judges, miRcore volunteer program (MVP) student online support committee meetings, MVP officers weekly meetings to plan main meetings, and online training sessions for group leaders in outreach programs.


TARGET AUDIENCE: Any high school students willing to learn, have fun with peers, and become familiar with the elements of medical research using computers. Most camps do not require prior knowledge. However, curiosity, working with other students, and an interest in making meaningful contributions to society are highly valued.

EXPECTATION: Most topics in the camps are challenging; you might not easily follow the contents at first. We have excellent group leaders who started the same way. Ask for help often. You will be surprised at the pleasant group learning experience. Our camps are research camps where, unlike in classrooms, there is not always a right answer. Be bold in generating your own ideas and share with others. Yes, you will learn to present in the amicable atmosphere. As laughter and exercise are known to change gene expression, a bit of silliness is built into the group games. In short, be brave and have fun.


Past Speakers:

Invited Speaker

Philip Maini, PhD

Professor of Mathematical Biology,
University of Oxford

[Read More Here]

Note: All campers are invited to join any and all talks, regardless of which camp they signed up for.

Invited Speaker

Michael Boehnke, PhD

Richard G. Cornell Distinguished University Professor,
University of Michigan

[Read More Here]

Note: All campers are invited to join any and all talks, regardless of which camp they signed up for.

Invited Speaker

Eric Green, MD, PhD

National Human Genome Research Institute,
National Institute of Health

[Read More Here]

Invited Speaker

Adam Lauring, MD, PhD

Associate Professor,
Department of Internal Medicine (Division of Infectious Diseases),
University of Michigan

[Read More Here]

Invited Speaker

David Orentlicher, MD, JD

Cobeaga Law Firm Professor of Law,
University of Nevada Las Vegas

[Read More Here]

Computational biology summer camp 2016 slide5

R summer camp 2016 slide4

biotechnology summer camp 2016 slide7

Scripps Summer Camp 2016 slide11



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