Prospective Students

Testimonials from Our Students

As evidenced by the following comments, our students find their graduate research experience and lifestyle very satisfying. Feel free to email any of these students - they are all willing to candidly answer any questions from prospective students and help in the transition to graduate school.

Barbara Rolls

UTMB provides graduate students many advantages. Since it is a medical school, students can choose a clinical/translational focus for their research.  UTMB also offers strong basic research and a complete spectrum from basic to clinical. New graduate students can use experience gained in rotations to determine which type of research appeals to them the most.  There are a number of programs, such as the Environmental Toxicology training program, that offer students additional opportunities and training. The faculty and staff are very supportive and the programs are very flexible.
There is a great deal of collaboration between laboratories and a friendly, helpful atmosphere. Students are encouraged to participate in the numerous symposiums, forums and several annual conferences held on campus, in addition to the local and national meetings that they attend. UTMB offers students many opportunities to learn additional skills outside of the laboratory that are critical for their long-term success. Time management, organizational, interpersonal, and business skills can be learned through formal and informal classes and applied by organizing conferences, running student organizations, and coordinating seminars for example. Graduate students are not required to teach but they are offered the opportunity if they desire the experience. Overall it is a top school with a program that is constantly working to improve graduate training and the success of their students. I believe the knowledge and skills I am acquiring at UTMB will make a difference in my future success.
Arijit Dutta: “BMB, a perfect destination for a graduate student for science, fun and all-round development...what else could I have asked for!”

I still remember the day as one of the cheeriest in my life, when I received the email from BMB confirming my admission at UTMB as a PhD student. Since then it has been a pleasant journey of learning and academic development along with so much fun. I was particularly allured by the department's strong infrastructure and group of principal investigators carrying out high impact scientific researches. The department not only offers the flexibility of taking up diverse course-works essential for broad-spectrum learning but also hosts top-notch seminars and talks by leading scientists including several Nobel laureates. Moreover regular journal clubs and chalk-talks provide the perfect opportunity for discussion-based learning. One of the things I really appreciate about BMB is the support provided to the graduate students in the form of travel awards and various scholarships, which is not only essential to boost the morale to carry out good science but to present the scientific achievements at leading national conferences. But being in BMB is just not limited to science. From my very first days at UTMB, I was embraced by the vibrant BMB student organization, BCSO, which I can almost call as my second family. It is here, where I got the opportunity to take up leadership roles and team-work which are essential qualities to be successful in any career-path. From career development workshops to bowling-hangouts, you will get it all at BCSO. Last but not the least, BMB has wonderful program coordinator(s) who never bat an eye in helping out students in the soup regarding various official stuffs, from course-works to the graduation.
Overall, my words fall short in testifying the pleasant and rewarding experience that I earned at BMB. I am sure my graduate research training at BMB, UTMB will prove to be highly beneficial for my scientific career.

Abhijnan Chattopadhyay:

The transition from living in one of the world's most populous cities, Calcutta, to life on the small island of Galveston was not supposed to be an easy one.Yet, I have never regretted the choice I made.I have loved every bit of my stay here. Everyone, from the people on the island to the faculty and staff at UTMB and the BMB department, has been wonderful to me. What I have loved about UTMB and my program in particular is the flexibility they offer you- with no restrictions on the faculty members we opt to work with and the courses we opt to pursue.The state of the art facilities here back up the excellent work the faculty here are carrying out. A major part of my stay here has been dominated by the devastation caused by hurricane Ike and the consequent recovery efforts.It has been heart-warming to see how the university has come together as a family and faced reality with a strong conviction to make things better. It has been a really humbling experience.
I have always received help and encouragement from the faculty and the great friends I have made here and realized that people here go out of their way to help you out. All in all, it has been a really rewarding experience - both academically and at a human level.
Venkat Mathura: "I find it amazing to see how the feedback system works and the commitment of the university to improve graduate education"
Graduate education at a medical school offers the distinct advantage of inter-disciplinary training at the cutting edge of biomedical oriented research. I selected UTMB because it is well known to offer an environment that supports and challenges the ideas and expectations of its students. UTMB has one of the best faculty to student ratios, with highly funded laboratories competing to make you a part of their research. Graduate students have the option to teach or focus fully on their research. The duration required to complete the PhD program is well below the national average. Being at UTMB for the past four years, I find it amazing to see how the feedback system works and the commitment of the institute to improve graduate education. As a part of graduate program, the school offers students an elective to earn a Certificate in Advanced Management. This option which definitely fascinated me as I want to work bridging research and management in the corporate environment.
Craig Bush: "... a choice I haven't regretted."
I entered UTMB's graduate program under slightly different circumstances than most students. My first position at UTMB was a software developer under the direction of Dr. Bruce Luxon and his fledgling bioinformatics core laboratory. It was my first time working in an academic environment and I happily excelled. Dr. Luxon encouraged me to continue my training by entering graduate school and explore research in the emerging fields of computational and systems biology. It proved to be a choice I haven't regretted. Within the first year of my studies, I've supplemented my training in the physical sciences with core classes in advanced biochemistry, cell biology, and molecular biology/genetics. The core curriculum allowed me to rotated through various laboratories and learn how others are approaching problems in the field. To be honest, I initially thought my lack of experience in biology would be a hindrance. However,it has proven to be an asset to the variety of research and interdisciplinary collaborations that are carried on by the B&MB faculty. I believe with UTMB I have found my diamond in the rough.
Payal Sheth: "...there's no other place I would rather be for my graduate studies."
Straight from Mumbai, India to Galveston was a big leap for me, not that taking up daunting tasks intimidates me, but this one especially was. I had acquired my BE in Chemical Engineering - a field completely different from Basic Biology. I arrived at UTMB with mixed feelings. Should I have chosen a different major? Will I be able to cope up? Now that I have finished a year at UTMB, I can confidently say I don't regret any decisions whatsoever. I got training in all the areas of my deficit. Equipped with all the necessary coursework, I am all set to choose my mentor. So far all the rotations I did were in the B&MB department. The mentors for my rotations have been very approachable and helpful, and honest which I think is very important. In short, there's no other place I would rather be for my graduate studies.
Lu Chen: "... my research experience here is as good as it could get."
Moving to coastal Texas from Shanghai, China was a totally new experience for me. Imagine landing on the moon, opening the hatch door and hearing the alien say to you, "Howdy, man!" However, since the landing my time at UTMB has been fantastic. I've discovered a wonderful lab and mentor to work with, a new culture and environment to enjoy, and a great group of friends to have fun with. I think my research experience here is as good as it could get. My lab is very well funded and manned. The extra money has allowed my mentor, Dr. Thompson, and myself to travel to conferences in San Francisco, China, and New England. I don't think I would want to be anywhere else right now.
Raghavendran. K. S.: "... wonderful facilites which can be compared to any of the best schools in the country."
I came to UTMB because of the research work in the field of Structural Biology and the wonderful facilites for the same which can be compared to any of the best schools in the country. Also because of the program (BSCB) which is very flexible and allows you to work with any of other researh faculty at UTMB if you are interested.The wonderful faculty have excellent knowledge of the subject and also after coming here I have realized that they are very helpful and will surely help to get what you want and help you reach your goals.
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