RCSI Research Summer School invites students to address key health challenges

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The RCSI Research Summer School 2021 (RSS) commences this week with more than 110 undergraduate students taking part in research activities at RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences.

Now in its 11th year, the programme immerses undergraduate students in the diverse RCSI research environment. Over eight weeks, the programme fosters an understanding in our students of how biomedical and clinically-focused research can be translated into practice with their future patients.

Participating students will either take part in a structured four-week core research skills taught programme or undertake a desk-based research project. Working with RCSI researchers from all disciplines, students will develop essential skills in project management, data management and analysis, scientific writing and presentation as well as core laboratory techniques and approaches to patient-focused research.

Research topics range across a broad spectrum of disciplines, including biochemistry, molecular biology, immunology and inflammation, clinical microbiology, pharmacology and cognitive science

The programme is supported by RCSI alumni and friends as well as RCSI corporate supporters such as GlaxoSmithKline, Medical Protection, Novartis, PEI, Perrigo, Pfizer, Servier and The Beaumont Hospital Cancer Research and Development Trust.

Professor Hannah McGee, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences at RCSI, said: "Throughout the Research Summer School, students will have the opportunity to gain experience in research techniques, working on the kinds of projects encountered during postgraduate research training. We hope participants will develop their understanding of the planning, focus and teamwork required to answer key health questions."

Dr Niall Stevens, Senior Lecturer and RSS coordinator at RCSI, said: "RCSI is dedicated to supporting undergraduate summer research projects and many students from across all schools received a prestigious university-funded student stipend to support their participation on the programme. We're very much looking forward to seeing the outcomes of their work over the coming months."

The annual RCSI Student Innovation Challenge, organised by the RSS and the RCSI Office of Research and Innovation as part of the programme, provides students with the opportunity to develop ideas and innovations that have the potential to solve some of the biggest challenges in healthcare. The teams will be tasked with addressing real-world challenges presented by RCSI researchers, pitching creative and innovation solutions to a panel of health innovation and venture capital judges at the 2021 Pitch Night.