MICROBIOLOGY AND IMMUNOLOGY
Dept. Code:  MIC

www.biomed.miami.edu/micro

Objective

The objective of the Microbiology and Immunology (MIC) graduate Program is to provide multi-faceted training opportunities that lead to competitive postgraduate careers.
The program trains students to rigorously investigate central topics in Microbiology or Immunology and their biomedical applications based on a broad comprehension of interdisciplinary science provided by the Program in Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences (PIBS) in the first year. Thereafter, the MIC Graduate Program offers students a specialty curriculum that is interactive and discussion based.
Furthermore, students are in charge of a research project in either viral or bacterial pathogenesis or in molecular immunology, autoimmunity, tumor immunity or transplantation.

Goals

The goals of the MIC Graduate Program include:

1. Train up creative and critical-thinking scientific minds with a solid understanding of Microbiology or Immunology
2. Train technical laboratory skills necessary to perform experiments in the area of specialization
3. Continue training skills necessary to present scientific findings orally and in writing, including independent research plans as well as competitive manuscripts and grant proposals
4. Prepare students to become the teachers of tomorrow by involving them in the active teaching process of a laboratory class for undergraduate students (Microbiology 301)
5. Nourish the next generation of a networked community of scientists that is well prepared for challenging postgraduate careers in academic and non-academic settings.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

All students interested in Microbiology and Immunology doctoral graduate programs are admitted through the Program in Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences (PIBS). Applicants should have a bachelor’s degree in a biological or related discipline (e.g., chemistry, engineering, physics). Although there are no absolute prerequisites, courses in general biology, cell/molecular biology, calculus, physics, chemistry, or biochemistry are encouraged.

Strong candidates will have research experience in a laboratory setting, an excellent academic record and GRE scores, excellent letters of recommendation from scientists who know the candidate well, and the motivation to pursue cutting edge biomedical research. The PIBS Admissions Committee will review and make decisions on complete applications after December 15th. Applicants should apply online at: www.biomed.miami.edu

First year of Graduate Study 

In the first semester, students of all graduate programs participate in the common PIBS curriculum for the biological and biomedical sciences. The core curriculum also offers learning opportunities in biostatistics, ethics, graduate development and in databases skills, Coursework relating to Microbiology and Immunology is largely being offered in the second semester.

The first year includes learning more about different programs, performing laboratory rotations with potential dissertation mentors and ultimately selecting both a program and mentor. To facilitate this process students are initially mentored by a senior student and faculty member. The students rotate through at least three laboratories before they chose mentors and formally enter the MIC graduate program. For a listing of our faculty research interest please visit our website: www.biomed.miami.edu/micro.

The Microbiology and Immunology Program

The Microbiology and Immunology Graduate Program accepts only students who wish to pursue the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree. The program accepts an individual with the ultimate goals of developing a creative and critically thorough research scientist. Such development is encouraged through the student’s performance of experimental protocols intended to address outstanding questions rooted in scientifically important areas of research.

Selection of a mentor to supervise dissertation research is major function during the first year of graduate study. Mentor selection is intended to be an experience in decision making in a supportive environment that launch a very intense relationship between a graduate student and a mentor.

After selection of a mentor, the mentor advises the student with regard to both course work and research. He may call on the student’s Progress Committee for additional advice. The MIC Graduate Program Office and its director are available for additional advice. 

Degree Requirements

Sixty credits beyond the baccalaureate degree are the minim requirements for the Ph.D. and 36 credits must be of coursework at the graduate level and 24 credits of thesis research must been taken in residence at the University of Miami. In addition students must pass the MIC Qualifying Exam. They will schedule defend their Ph.D. dissertation after at least one peer-reviewed; first-author manuscript with primary experimental data (no review) has been accepted or in presses before the time of their defense, in a reputable journal in the areas of investigation. The Obtaining a doctoral degree in Microbiology and Immunology normally requires five to six years beyond the bachelor’s degree. The degree earned will be a Doctor of Philosophy in Microbiology and Immunology.

Financial Support

All students accepted are awarded a stipend of $27,000 per annum (as of June 1, 2012) and receive a full tuition scholarship. In addition, if students choose the University of Miami graduate student health insurance program, 80% of the individual insurance premium will be covered.

Inquires

Please direct your questions to:
Graduate Program in Microbiology and Immunology
University of Miami
Miller School of Medicine
P.O. Box 016960 (R138)
Miami, Florida 33101
Telephone: 305-243-6655

Visit www.biomed.miami.edu/micro

COMBINED M.D./PH.D. DEGREE

The Microbiology and Immunology Graduate Program participates in the School of Medicine’s MD/PhD Program. Medical students interested in advance research in Microbiology and Immunology should consult the Director of the MIC Graduate Program (Mathias Lichtenheld, M.D., mlichten@med.miami.edu).