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RFUMS Summer Scholars Program

The LFC-RFU Summer Research Scholars Program is the original partnership activity that connected Lake Forest College and Rosalind Franklin University for Medicine and Science, located just 10 minutes away from campus by car or train.

About the Program

Since 2009, this unique and thriving summer research training program for our life science majors has trained over 150 lake Forest College students till date. Every summer, 15-20 undergraduates (from first year to senior thesis students) conduct up to 10 weeks of paid research as RFUMS summer scholars. 

All participants have gained exceptional professional mentors among the faculty at this graduate health professions university. Each student works in specific medical school professor’s lab carrying out original medical research in the areas of cell and molecular pharmacology, neuroscience, cell biology and anatomy, biochemistry and molecular biology, pathology, microbiology and immunology, physiology and biophysics, psychology, medicinal chemistry, and more.  

The student scholar receives a free Lake Forest College full course credit and a living stipend. The scholar is eligible to receive summer housing and participate in cafeteria meal plans at Lake Forest College, at a reduced cost.


Alumnae of this program are successfully pursuing PhDs, medical school, physical therapy, optometry, and other health professions and scientific careers.

All scholars present their research at the college’s Robert B. Glassman Memorial Brain, Mind, and Behavior Symposium in fall or at the Steven P. Galovich Memorial Student Symposium in spring. Our scholars also regularly present and win honors for their work at national conferences such as the national Society for Neuroscience meeting and Chicago area scientific conferences, such the Chicago Society for Neuroscience Meeting and the Great Lakes Chapter of the American Society for Pharmaceutical and Experimental Therapeutics.  

Several scholars have received undergraduate poster prizes at these scientific conferences.  Some have also co-authored scientific manuscripts published in major journals. 

How to Apply?

Applications for the Summer 2022 Program will be sent to all LFC life science majors by November 15 (2021). Contact Program Director Professor of Biology Shubhik DebBurman ( for details.

Fall 2021 deadlines:

Application deadline:December 10, 2021
Application Decisions: February 15, 2022
Scholar/Faculty Mentor Match: March 15, 2022
Program Orientation: April 2022. Dat TBD.
Likely Program dates: May 10- July 15 (Final dates will be available when the applications open)

Barry Kim ’22, a neuroscience student at Lake Forest College, spent this past summer working with Assistant Professor Neelam Sharma-Walia in the Department of Microbiology...
Mary Denichenko ’22 has a singular goal: to attend medical school and become a doctor. Research experience is a critical step in accomplishing this goal, and as a student...
Through the RFUMS Summer Scholars Program, Demetri Maglaras ’23 had the opportunity to clone a gene into a DNA plasmid while studying under Professor Joseph Reynolds at...


Shubhik DebBurman
Disque D. and Carol Gram Deane Professor of Biological Sciences

Pauline Binder-Finnema
Science & Health Care Pathway Leader