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GEMS Faculty

Faculty Membership Heading link

The GEMS program provides a multidisciplinary, skills-based PhD education that is accordant with the highly collaborative and data-driven nature of modern biomedical research. The program is organized by six research concentrations and the academic home of the majority of faculty resides within one of the basic science departments in the UI College of Medicine. Building upon strength gained from diversity, GEMS seeks to provide an environment that is inclusive at multiple levels, including the background of individuals and their scientific research interests. UIC faculty can apply to become a GEMS faculty member and contribute to the program. Applications are reviewed by the GEMS executive committee on a rolling basis and recommended to College of Medicine for membership and support for Graduate College when applicable. New GEMS faculty applicants are strongly encouraged to consider approaching one of the basic science departments within the UI College of Medicine for an adjunct appointment to provide an academic and research home for the faculty member to coincide with the GEMS training appointment.


Please note that GEMS is run by its faculty. For GEMS to remain a vibrant training program that evolves with changing scientific and career environments, it depends upon active participation from its faculty. Therefore, a condition of membership in GEMS and in individual research concentrations, faculty must participate in teaching, service, and research encompassed by research concentrations. New faculty coming to UI College of Medicine with documented prior graduate training experience or through national/international searches and have significant funding for student support may choose a research concentration within GEMS. All members will be reviewed every three years to evaluate their continued participation in student training and program activities. Faculty that do not participate significantly in the program will not have their membership renewed. Please keep in mind that although having a student in your group contributes to the program, it does not represent a sufficient level of participation to justify continued membership and access to future trainees.

Faculty members of GEMS are expected to:

  1. Demonstrate independent research productivity in areas related to relevant research concentration(s).
  2. Research support for active, ongoing laboratory research.
  3. A training environment that provides opportunities for collaboration and participation in seminars and journal clubs.
  4. Active participation in the GEMS Program, including:
    • Annual recruitment of graduate students
    • Mentoring graduate students in laboratory rotations
    • Service on Thesis committees
    • Service on Preliminary Exam committees
    • Teaching in GEMS core or research concentration-specific courses
    • Service on standing committees
    • Service with mentor-mentoring activities

Become a GEMS faculty member

Those interested in becoming a GEMS faculty member should contact Director of Administration, Tim Sullivan-

Advisor Responsibilities Heading link

By taking a GEMS student into one’s lab, the Thesis Advisor accepts responsibilities in addition to supervising thesis research, which is the primary role of the Thesis Advisor. Expectations for Thesis advisors include:

  1. Provide financial support for the student, including stipend and fees.
  2. Provide guidance to ensure that the student completes the Preliminary Exam before the beginning of the third year and Thesis Defense by the fifth year.
  3. Participate in annual Thesis Committee meetings for student beginning in third year.
  4. Conduct scheduled review with the student and formal evaluations on progress toward Thesis Dissertation (twice a year) and student’s Individual Development Plan (IDP; once a year).