Student Committees

1st Year: Initial Guidance Committee

  • In the first year BBSP students join a focus group (First Year Group) comprised of students and faculty advisors having related research interests.
  • First Year Groups meet in an informal course setting to work on development of critical thinking and scientific communication skills.
  • Please refer to BBSP website for more information:

2nd Year: 5-Member Thesis Committee

  • Consists of at least 5 faculty, suggested by the student in consultation with the advisor
  • Selected during Spring semester of the 2nd Year (usually in March)
  • At least three of the committee members, including the advisor and the committee chair, must have a primary or joint appointment in the Department of Biochemistry & Biophysics; other members may be from other departments on this campus or other universities.
  • A listing of the suggested committee must be submitted in advance to the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS). Chair is selected by the DGS. Changes to your thesis committee must to be approved in advance by the DGS.
  • Full committee is required to meet at least once a year.

Role of the committee chair

  • The chair will ensure that meetings are conducted properly and fairly as well as the Oral Exam and Thesis Defense
  • After a meeting, the chair will complete the thesis committee's Annual Progress Report and return it within 48 hours to Lisa Phillippie (3024 Genetic Medicine Building).
  • Chair's responsibilities continue until the student defends his/her final thesis and earns the Ph.D. degree.

Role of the committee

  • The Committee is responsible for advising the student.
  • The Committee chair is responsible for turning in signed forms to Lisa Phillippie within 48 hours of the oral exam and Committee meeting and for summarizing on that form the closed discussion of the Committee on the student’s performance and any recommendations made to the student.
  • The committee chair is also responsible for emailing a summary to the student of each meeting that details progress and future goals.