Alfaisal Summer Program in Research Excellence (ASPiRE)
The Alfaisal Summer Program in Research Excellence (ASPiRE) is an in-house sister program of the Summer Program for International Research Internship and Training (SPIRIT) that offers Alfaisal undergraduate medical students a unique and immersive experience in basic research. The ASPiRE program contributes to Alfaisal University College of Medicine's vision in preparing physicians who actively contribute to medical research. The ASPiRE 2021 program will accommodate at least 60 students.
The ASPiRE program offers qualified Alfaisal undergraduate medical students the opportunity to train in basic research and become members of research teams. Each week of the ASPiRE program focuses on a specific theme within biomedical research that allows students to discover first-hand the broad spectrum of research activities. The themes covered under the program are as follows:
Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Metabolic Disorders and Diabetes
Topics covered during the program include:
Week 1: Primary cell culture, Immortalized cell lines, 3-D cell cultures, Animal models, genetically modified animal models, bacterial cultures, and viral cultures.
Week 2: RNA extraction methods, Semiquantitative RT-PCR, Quantitative RT-PCR, and Northern Blotting, Microarrays and SAGE
Week 3: Protein extraction and quantification, Western blotting, immunohistochemistry, immunofluorescence, ELISA, Mass spectrometry
Week 4: Transfections, transformation, cloning, protein expression
Week 5: RNA silencing and gene editing using CAS-9
Week 6: DNA extraction and quantification, PCR, Southern blotting
Week 7: Restriction fragment length polymorphism, Sanger sequencing, and next-generation sequencing.
Some of the practical hands-on laboratory sessions include:
Lab safety, pipetting techniques, and buffer preparation
Cell culture, trypsinization, cell seeding, counting, and freezing
Extraction and quantification of DNA and RNA
PCR and gel electrophoresis
Protein extraction and quantification, and SDS gel
ASPiRE Poster Day
During the final week of the program, students will design and present their research proposals during the ASPiRE Poster Day. Best poster presentations will be awarded during the event.
ASPiRE Research Grants
Students will also have the opportunity to submit their proposals and compete for research grants towards the end of the program. Best proposals will be awarded funding for the project.
The dates for the ASPiRE 2021 program are Sunday, June 20, 2021, to Thursday, August 19, 2021.
The ASPiRE program is an 8-week immersive experience in a laboratory setting within the campus of Alfaisal University. You are expected to be present for the entire duration of the program (excluding the Eid Break).
Applicants must fulfill the following eligibility criteria to be considered as “eligible” applicants:
Have no scheduled College of Medicine (CoM) summer courses for the duration of the program.
Have no record of misconduct with the university or during any national or international programs organized by the Medical Student Association (MSA) or the CoM.
The deadline for submitting your complete application is Wednesday, June 16, 2021, @ 4 PM
An online application form is required to be submitted that contains questions to assess your preparedness for the ASPiRE program. Additional requirements include the following:
Personal statement - Please provide a brief statement (about 300 words) stating your interest in the program and how does it assist you in fulfilling your career goals.
Copy of your latest academic transcript (Spring 2020-2021) from NetClassroom
The above documents can be submitted through the same online application form.
Applications to the ASPiRE program are open now. You can apply now.
All submitted applications will be reviewed immediately. Applicants will be notified about the status of their application as soon as possible.
ASPiRE 2021 is a 100% scholarship program that is funded by the College of Medicine, Alfaisal University.
However, a confirmation fee of SAR 500 is required to be paid after acceptance into the program to confirm your participation. Details on payment will be shared along with the Letter of Acceptance.
You are welcome to contact us at email@example.com any time should you have questions.