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REU 2013 participants

2013 Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program

Nineteen undergraduates participated in the 2013 NIMBioS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU), June 10-August 2, 2013. During the eight-week program, participants lived on campus at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UT), and worked in teams with NIMBioS postdocs and UT faculty to conduct research at the interface of mathematics and biology. The award included a stipend, housing and some funding to support travel.

The Projects

REU Mentors

REU Participants

REU Profiles

Click on the names below for comments from some of the 2013 REU participants.

Christian Mason photo.

Christian Mason
Major: Mathematical and Computational Biology
School: Harvey Mudd College
Hometown: Los Altos, CA
REU Research Project: Automatic detection of rare birds through recordings

Christopher Oballe photo.

Christopher Oballe
Major: Mathematics and Biochemistry
School: The University of Texas at Austin
Hometown: Austin, TX
REU Research Project: Modeling protein translation and genome evolution

Kathryn Schaber photo.

Kathryn Schaber
Major: Mathematics
School: University of Dayton
Hometown: Fort Thomas, KY
REU Research Project: Mathematical modeling of animal disease from coronavirus

Kiersten Utsey photo.

Kiersten Utsey
Major: Mathematics and Biology
School: Carroll College
Hometown: Spokane, WA
REU Research Project: Mathematical modeling of fetal electrocardiograms

Michael Vella photo.

Michael Vella
Major: Applied and Computational Mathematics and Statistics with a concentration in Biological Sciences
School: University of Notre Dame
Hometown: Minneapolis, MN
REU Research Project: Modeling the environmental transmission of infectious diseases: Escherichia coli transmission in cattle

Rachael Ward photo.

Rachael Ward
Major: Mathematics and Spanish
School: Rhodes College
Hometown: Woodville, MS
REU Research Project: Modeling animal social network dynamics

Evaluation Report

Blogging from the 2013 program:

Bender Receives Outstanding Undergraduate Poster Award
NIMBioS REU's talk cows and hyenas at MBI Capstone Conference
Which REU student volunteers at an animal shelter? Find out in our REU profiles?
Day 1: Learning & fun at REU
Working hard and playing hard: NIMBioS REU is halfway

REU in the News

Faces of Rhodes: Rachael Ward '14. Rhodes College News
Searching for rare birds, WBIR-TV
Dream jobs: Interns spend summer researching animals, performing for theater. Knoxville News Sentinel
Eastern student selected for summer research experience at national institute. Eastern Connecticut State Univ.
Rhodes student selected for mathematics research experience at national institute. Rhodes College
Student excels in summer research program. UTEP News
University of Dayton STEM undergraduates conduct summer research through national grants. Chronicle of Higher Education
Bird calls and binary codes: College students explore interface between biology and math.
Professor discovers rare birds in Kodak. UT Daily Beacon
New technology helps track rare birds In Smokies.
Three students selected for summer research experience at national institute. Tennessee Today
Michael Vella selected for summer research experience at national institute. Univ. of Notre Dame, College of Science, News

Related Links

Main NIMBioS Summer Research Experiences page

For further information about the program, please contact Kelly Sturner, Education and Outreach Coordinator, NIMBioS (Email: or Dr. Suzanne Lenhart, Associate Director of Education, Outreach, and Diversity, NIMBioS (Email:

1122 Volunteer Blvd., Suite 106
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-3410
PH: (865) 974-9334
FAX: (865) 974-9461
Contact NIMBioS

From 2008 until early 2021, NIMBioS was supported by the National Science Foundation through NSF Award #DBI-1300426, with additional support from The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
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