Princeton University
Department of Molecular Biology

Upcoming Summer Workshop

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Summer Workshop

Due to loss of HHMI funding, the 2014 Summer Workshop was our last.

Thanks to all the dedicated and amazing teachers who inspire their students every day!

Due to loss of HHMI funding, the 2014 Summer Workshop was our last.

Thanks to all the dedicated and amazing teachers who inspire their students every day!


Bring cutting-edge biotechnology into your classroom.

Join us at Princeton University for our two-week summer workshop Molecular Biology Hands-On: Cool Genes, Colorful Proteins. Every day features a stimulating mix of laboratory projects and discussions with colleagues and Princeton faculty. Teachers are guided from the basics of gel electrophoresis to discussions and experiments on genetically modified foods, human genetics and evolution, and the human microbiome. They will transform bacteria with plasmids coding for a rainbow of Nobel Prize winning fluorescent proteins. New experiments exploring the symbiosis of bacteria and plants highlight major global challenges such as ocean dead zones and feeding an expanding world population with decreasing land resources.


Earn a stipend, and 80 professional development hours while living on the Princeton campus. Our support continues into the school year with loaner kits packed with equipment (regional teachers), reagents and supplies. We also invite you back to campus, with your students, for our fall TIGER Talk. World-renowned scientists share their passion for research, and their tales of adventure, to inspire your students.

What Do Teachers Say About Summer Workshops


The hands-on experiences in the lab every day were extraordinary! Total immersion in a foreign language is how one learns the language well. Total immersion into the molecular biology field is how one learns molecular biology, how to teach it, how to apply it, how to develop conceptual understanding of how genes work, how they are classified, how they react with other genes and molecules, how to manipulate genes, extract DNA, amplify it, trace evolutionary lineages, and synthesize protocols for use in the classroom.",

Nearly all of the research that was discussed during our lunch talks is extremely relevant to things I already discuss in class. I can easily see myself inputting information from these research talks into my plans to motivate and engage the students. I think that this would really help them see the relevance of learning Biology, which is something that they cannot normally grasp. The overall goal with these research talks for me is to get students excited about research that is happening now, and to have students realize how relevant the topics are that they are learning about in class."

I will be able to introduce my 7th grade students to molecular biology - as a career path, connecting current news in science, and some beginning skills and knowledge. The connection of molecular biology to nitrogen/environmental issues was stimulating and important."

I will definitely be adding PCR and DNA electrophoresis to my classes. Before this workshop, I didn't even understand what PCR was and now I feel confident I can share this technique and its importance to my classes. Thank you so much for the opportunity to check out the tools to run these experiments, without them I would only be able to share the concepts virtually. I also plan to immediately add bacterial transformation to my Biology Class and include the rainbow in my AP Class. (I never would have considered doing transformation with freshmen, but now ... why wouldn't I?)"

With the two-week laboratory training I am now confident to implement these laboratory experiments in my school. The series of lecture from Princeton professors/scientists I learned a lot of new scientific studies conducted which I never heard before, these equipped me to better explain to my students the current developments in the field of science. The two-week hands-on and minds-on activities broaden my understanding of molecular biology and improved my content knowledge and pedagogy. The instructional tools and knowledge I gained from the program are great resources I can use to improve instruction. HHMI 2012 Summer workshop is indeed a great learning community where everyone is actively involved in the learning process - sharing expertise, experiences, and resources."

The workshop absolutely exceeded my expectations - I really enjoyed the lab work, getting to know other teachers, and the sense of community that we built in a short two weeks. I will also appreciate getting to borrow labs from the lending library."

Lewis Thomas Lab
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Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Princeton Center for Quantitative Biology