BUILD Research Collaboratory (BRC)

BRC flier


What is the Summer 2020 BUILD Research Collaboratory (BRC) experience?

In response to COVID-19, we’re launching an 8-week course in basic bioinformatics coding for current NIH BUILD students nationwide. The summer experience will use an online structured near peer mentoring framework. This means that each trainee will be part of a small mentoring group, and that they will work with a masters student to learn basic coding, and to examine health outcomes. The focus will be COVID-19 and its impact on communities, particularly communities facing health disparities. The Director of the BRC is Dr. Kala Mehta of the University of California at San Francisco’s (UCSF) Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. Dr. Mehta is the Student Training Core (STC) Lead for the SF BUILD Program.

Can we still sign up?

Sign ups have closed

When will this program take place?

June 22- August 13 . Our schedule is Monday-Thursdays only and students will participate in either an early start at 9am  PST or a later start at 11 am PST most days. We have two separate sections pacific time to accommodate all time zones.

What are the hours for this summer experience?

Introduction will last for 8 weeks, 4 days a week and will require students to attend 2-3 hours of online group work daily; there will also be out of class reading, group work, and assignments. 


EARLY SCHEDULE:  Start at 9 am pacific standard time, Monday-Thursday June 22-August 13.

LATE SCHEDULE: Start at 11 am pacific standard time, Monday-Thursday June 23-August 12.  10:30am sharp on: June 24, June 25 the first week for the engagement sessions.  More engagement sessions are planned and we will give you a full schedule soon of the 10:30 am start days, about 2 per week.

Where will this all take place?

We will be using Zoom and other web technology tools for this virtual summer research experience. There will be no in-person meetings. More details are forthcoming.

Who is participating?

Current NIH BUILD Students across 7 NIH BUILD States.

If a student is already doing research in an active lab, should they join BRC? 

We encourage any NIH-BUILD scholars who are paired with a mentor and who are able to safely continue their ongoing research at their own site to continue and not participate with our program.

Who would the ideal candidates be for this program?

The ideal candidate is a newly selected BUILD student (not yet paired) or students who are engaged in research that is halted due to COVID-19. We would request students in the latter scenario to communicate early with their research supervisors/mentors that they are joining BRC for the summer only, and that they plan to RETURN to their primary lab as soon as it is safe or possible. If this occurs during BRC, we request that the student finish the 8 week BRC program. This is important given that each student will be part of a mentoring group, and the overall success of the group is dependent on each of its members.

Do scholars need R or coding skills before this program?

NO PRIOR CODING EXPERIENCE NEEDED. Any current NIH- BUILD student, regardless of their prior skills with R coding, is welcome to join the course. The course will accommodate a variety of learners at a range of skills and abilities. All are welcome. We are currently not accepting graduates (BUILD alumni). However, we have a waiting list if there are graduates who may be interested.

Who are the Near Peer Mentors?

The Near Peer Mentors are masters level students who have skills in near peer facilitation and R-coding/public health/bioinformatics. If your site has masters level students who may want to serve as near peer facilitators, please contact our team.

What skills are students expected to develop during the summer?

Population health science concepts, data collection from publicly available data sets, data analysis training with R, writing, presentation and communication skills.

Will faculty at other sites play a role?

We expect to have a point person at each site, and are working on including others. We recognize that faculty at other sites would like to maintain and enhance their relationships with students, especially newly selected trainees. Therefore, we are working on the means to include others. 

Where can I find more information regarding the BRC?

This page and our current slides on program planning.


Engagement Sessions Speaker Schedule
Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo  June 24th @ 10:30am-11:00am
George Rutherford July 2nd @ 10:30am-11:00am
Alicia Fernandez July 6th @ 10:30am-11:00am
Tung Nguyen July 29th @ 10:30am-11:00am
Suzzana Martinez August 5th @ 10:30am-11:00am


Who are key contacts if I have any questions?


Last Updated: December 22, 2020