Columbia DBMI Summer Research Program

The Columbia Department of Biomedical Informatics (DBMI) Summer Research Program provides rising seniors in high school and college undergraduate students from a wide range of backgrounds (biology, psychology, engineering, computer science, applied mathematics, statistics, etc.) with fundamental knowledge, hands-on skills, and research experience in biomedical informatics and health data science.

The goal of the program is to promote biomedical informatics and health data science as a career choice for young scientists in training. The program takes place in an inclusive research and learning environment. Students from traditionally underrepresented minority groups are encouraged to apply.

The Columbia DBMI Summer Research Program is part of the biomedical informatics training program which targets a broad spectrum of learners. After missing the last two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we were thrilled to return the summer research program during the summer of 2022 in a virtual setting!

Summer Program Testimonials

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Overview

The Columbia DBMI Summer Research Program lasts six weeks and has traditionally taken place in the Collaboration Space at DBMI. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2022 program was held virtually from July 5 through August 12. 

The 2019 DBMI Summer students visited Watson Health at Astor Place.

At the end of the program, fellows will have gained computing and research skills, familiarity with the fields of informatics and health data science, experience with real-world, massive health datasets from electronic health records and the data acumen that comes with handling such datasets, along with understanding of the complex ethical and fairness questions inherent to biomedical informatics and health data science research. 

• Research Project: Students will work on a project currently being led by DBMI faculty and graduate students;
• Mini-course: Students will watch and discuss prerecorded lectures with faculty on how biomedical informatics has the potential to improve healthcare outcomes and practice through new knowledge generation;
• Lab Meetings: Students will participate in weekly lab meetings to illuminate the intricacies of how research is conducted;
• Journal Clubs: Students will present recent publications that report on biomedical interventions in healthcare;
• Study Design: Students will study the Observational Health Data Sciences and Informatics (OHDSI) framework, a clinical data warehouse of more than 800 million patient records, to propose a study of their own choosing;

The Department of Biomedical Informatics (DBMI) is part of the Graduate School for Arts and Science at Columbia University and the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. Our faculty are affiliated with both the Columbia University Irving Medical Center and the Columbia Data Science Institute.  

The 2019 Summer Fellows get together for a group photo outside the DBMI department at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

Our trainees and faculty come from a wide range of disciplines and are all committed to improving health and healthcare through the use and design of informatics methods and tools. Examples of DBMI research is available here, and include machine learning, causal inference, natural language processing, data assimilation, mobile health, disease phenotyping, technology for shared decision making, large-scale observational data science, and study of health and healthcare disparities.  

Eligibility

Undergraduate students and and rising seniors in high school are invited to apply for the Columbia DBMI Summer Research Program.  

To promote diversity in higher education and biomedical informatics, students from traditionally underrepresented minority groups are encouraged to apply.  

Apply

Applications are not open yet for the 2023 cohort. Please check this page for an announcement on when applications are open! 

For more information, please contact Herbert Chase (hc15@cumc.columbia.edu)