Training Grants

DBTP Activities and Events

DBTG Activities and Events

An important element of a successful Training Program is providing a strongly interactive and exciting research environment. We foster interactions between students, postdoctoral trainees, and faculty, and enhance the training experience of our graduate students through regular seminar series, journal clubs, on campus conferences, and other joint meetings, as well as social events, as described below. The overall goals of the training related activities are: (1) to develop cohesion amongst the trainees and faculty of the DBTP (2) to provide trainees with progressive experience in data presentation (3) to enhance their education by exposure to research performed within and beyond our institution (4) to provide networking opportunities and information that can assist students in developing future career plans, whether within or beyond the academy


2021 - Bi-monthly, lunchtime - Developmental Biology Journal / Data Presentation Club: This is a very popular long-standing bi-monthly lunchtime meeting jointly sponsored by the DBTP and DRSB, in which students or postdoctoral trainees either present recent journal articles or discuss their ongoing research. Food is generously provided from the DRSB budget and the meetings are well-attended by students, staff, postdocs and faculty from the DBTP labs. All current and previous DBTP trainees are required to participate in this meeting. Journal discussions focus on a single recent paper presented by a student, or occasionally by a postdoc. Data presentations are in the form of two 25-minute presentations and are very interactive with plenty of discussion and feedback. The journal/data presentation club has been organized by Co-Director Dr. Horne-Badovinac, with assistance from a student organizer and the DRSB program administrator. The club is associated with the new Communicating Developmental Biology Concepts course.

2021 - Third Tuesday of the Month - Developmental Biology Seminar Series: The monthly Developmental Biology seminar, jointly sponsored by the DBTP and DRSB, is held on the third Tuesday of the month during the academic year. Since Fall 2011, the seminar series has been student-organized. Under the mentorship of three members of the Steering Committee, DBTP and DRSB students in their second year and above are responsible for selecting, inviting, hosting and introducing the seminar speakers, and also take the speakers to dinner. The students benefit from unprecedented networking and professional experience through this exercise. All DBTP trainees are required to attend the monthly seminar.

2022 - Developmental Biology Symposia: The DBTP has organized and co-sponsored multiple symposia since its inauguration. These have included three topic-based symposia with external speakers: Regeneration (2010), Epigenetics in Development (2013), and most recently “Morphogenesis” (2017), which featured keynote speaker James Hanken (Harvard University) and five regional speakers. Planning is underway for the 2022 symposium. For each symposium, the topic was student selected, and students also played a leading role in selecting, inviting and hosting the speakers under guidance of a faculty mentor whose research interests lie in the appropriate topic area. The DBTP has also co-sponsored regular “mini-symposia,” typically featuring one local external speaker plus internal speakers. The most recent was held in April 2016, in conjunction with an External Advisory Board (EAB) visit. We will continue to host regular mini-symposia in years when no full symposium is planned.

2021 Society for Developmental Biology national postdoctoral zoom speaker seriesSecond Friday of the month at 2:00 pm CT

2021 Monthly Seminar Series in Molecular Genetics, Neurobiology and Evolutionary Morphology. Shared in the weekly list "BSD events around the Division" shared by Marcy Hochberg on Monday mornings.


October 16, 2021Molecular Biosciences Annual Retreat: All Molecular Biosciences students come together with postdoctoral trainees and faculty for a weekend retreat early in the academic year. The DBTP has made attendance at the Annual Retreat possible for its trainees who matriculate through programs not in the Molecular Biosciences cluster. DBTP trainees are required to attend the annual retreat. The retreat serves as a useful 'bonding' experience; it helps students establish friendships that allow them to share resources and support one another through the rigors of graduate school. Student interactions also lead to collaborations between labs. A committee of students, staff and faculty organizes the retreat and ensures broad representation. At the retreat, senior students, postdocs, and new faculty give short oral presentations. The quality of student presentations is very high: both home labs and the retreat organizing committee work with students before the meeting to ensure presentations are appropriate for this broad audience. The talks provide students with invaluable experience that helps them immensely when they present at national meetings. The retreat also includes a poster session, which provides a good forum for more junior students to present ongoing research.

October 5, 2021 DBTP Fall Orientation and Reception: The DBTP hosts an annual Fall Orientation for new and reappointed trainees. The Director and Steering Committee welcome incoming students, introduce them to the more senior trainees, outline the benefits and expectations of the program, and solicit feedback and ideas regarding all aspects of the program. 

November 6, 2020Breakthroughs in Marine Biology Symposium: November 6, 2020 - The DBTP co-sponsored a symposium showcasing the exciting research ongoing at our sister institution, the Marine Biological Laboratory, held via Zoom.

2019 Friday afternoons - Graduate Student Seminar Series: The division supports a Friday afternoon graduate student seminar series, given by students to students. This series is unique in deliberately excluding faculty. These seminars provide more senior students with experience in oral presentations, and provide information to younger students, often of special value to first year students as they choose their laboratories. Food is provided with BSD support, and these sessions are well attended.