BREED REU Program at SF State

SF State's Department of Biology hosts a yearly summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) in Biological Research in Ecological and Evolutionary Developmental-Biology (BREED), funded by a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant.

Program Highlights

  • Summer-long full time program in SF Bay Area; June 5th, 2023 - August 6th, 2023; one-week lab/lecture course followed by full-time independent research
  • $5,500 stipend with some assistance on living and travel costs
  • Individual research projects in one of many faculty laboratories in both the Departments of Biology and Estuary & Ocean Science Center at SF State
  • Integrated program of academic and professional development
  • Weekly career development workshop 
  • Mentoring from research faculty, graduate students, and peers
  • Excursions and social programs that allow us to visit field sites around central CA to discuss biodiversity and environmental concerns with experts!
  • Students from community colleges are encouraged to apply. We welcome local Bay area students and SF State undergrads, too.

Students in our REU program will have the opportunity to work with many terrific researchers. To learn about some of our great mentors in previous years and their REU research projects please click here.

This program is designed to expose participating students to core concepts in Ecology, Evolution and Developmental Biology. The participating faculty provide a broad range of research options in these areas. They also share a strong commitment to working with undergraduates and promoting diversity in the biosciences. 

REU students will learn about the role of phenotypic and environmental variation in the evolution of diversity and complexity. They may learn about patterns and processes of molecular evolution and they may engage in the SCIP coding workshop as part of the internship. All REU students will engage in independent research activities in laboratories at SFSU or at the Estuary & Ocean Science Center. They will also will participate in weekly professional development meetings in which they will learn strategies for successfully pursuing a career in science. The summer’s activities will conclude with a campus-wide research symposium at which our REU students will have the opportunity to present their findings to the campus community. The program incorporates social interactions and networking designed to foster the development of an ongoing community of learners, giving students opportunities to make connections that will endure beyond the end of the summer and that will support them in their academic paths.

We expect that the students selected to participate in this program will be present for the full Summer-long duration and will participate in all the scheduled activities associated with the program. The majority of time will be spent in the lab, but equally important are the seminars and professional development aspects of the program.  

Who should apply?

  • Rising sophomores or juniors (must be a returning student in Fall 2022) 
  • Highly motivated students interested in biological research
  • Students interested in the possibility of graduate school (Ph.D.) not an M.D.
  • Have completed or be enrolled in at least one course in biology, one in chemistry, and one in math before applying
  • United States citizens or permanent residents (required by NSF guidelines)
  • Able to show proof of health insurance for duration of the program
  • Applicants are not required to have previous research experience.

Application Instructions

Applications for Summer 2023 will open soon...

Interested in the BREED REU? Contact Us! 

For general questions email Program Director Dr. Sarah Cohen ( or send your inquiry to