On July 1, 2013, the MBL formally affiliated with the University of Chicago. The affiliation strengthens both institutions’ missions of leadership and innovation in scientific research and education. It also builds on shared values and historical ties between Chicago and the MBL, which was led by University of Chicago faculty members for the first four decades of its existence. The MBL is an independent 501(c)3 in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Both the MBL and the University of Chicago have reputations for highly collaborative and interactive cultures that draw top biologists from around the world. The MBL's unique convening power attracts faculty and students from well over 100 different institutions each year. Scientists from these institutions, like those from UChicago, carry out research at different times of the year in MBL facilities. The many active projects and collaborations benefit from the MBL's reputation as a convenor of science, both nationally and internationally.
Other active collaborations and productive interactions involve teams from both institutions working together on a variety of projects including:
- genomics, neural circuitry, and behavior of cephalopods
- microbiomes in organisms ranging from marine invertebrates to human
- high-performance computation and imaging of biological samples
- regenerative biology and tissue engineering
The Whale: Biology, Culture and Evolution on Nantucket Sound
Offered for the first time in 2015, this Autumn-quarter program based at the MBL targets UChicago undergraduate non-science majors interested in the entwined histories of whales and America. The program explores evolutionary theory through close examination of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species and Descent of Man, as well as provides immersive laboratory-based research experiences in the biology of marine organisms, biodiversity and the impact of human activities on coastal and ocean ecosystems. More information is available here.
The Jeff Metcalf Summer for Undergraduate Research Fellows (SURF) is an opportunity exposing University of Chicago students to the world-class science conducted at the MBL. The Metcalf Summer for Undergraduate Fellows targets first through fourth year undergraduate students. It is designed to help students explore science beyond their core courses and immerse in comprehensive discovery research over a 12-week summer experience. Learn more here.
Bootcamp for UChicago Graduate Students
A “Quantitative Biology Boot Camp” targeted for all incoming graduate students from all programs in UChicago’s Biological Sciences Division is held at the MBL. The course provides students with a working knowledge of computational and statistical approaches through their application to analysis of real world data sets. Organizers also hope to foster future MBL-UChicago collaborations by exposing students to the full range of MBL’s research opportunities and resources. Learn more here.
The University of Chicago Campaign: Inquiry and Impact, the most ambitious and comprehensive campaign in the University’s history, will raise $4.5 billion and engage 125,000 alumni to support faculty and researchers, practitioners and patients, and students and programs across the University. The Campaign will raise $100 million to support initiatives at the Marine Biological Laboratory. Learn more here.