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Undergraduate Research

Dr. O'Connell and Moremi at the lab bench

The Laboratory of Organismal Biology hosts undergraduate summer internships through the Department of Biology B-SURP program, the Bio-X interdisciplinary program, and the Wu Tsai NeURO fellowship program. These programs give Stanford undergraduates the opportunity to intern in the lab for 10 weeks working on an independent project along with multiple social and educational opportunities. Applications to this program are due in December (Bio-X), January (Biology), and February (NeURO).

Non-Stanford students from groups historically excluded from science that are interested in summer research can apply through the SSRP-AMGEN program.

Community college students: We want you! We currently have funds from the National Science Foundation to support two students from local community colleges each summer.

Stanford students interested in pursuing research projects throughout the academic year should fill out this formWe do not offer unpaid internships as this promotes socioeconomic divides in science. Students are either paid for their work in the laboratory or receive class credit.

We are particularly interested in working with undergraduate students from groups historically excluded from STEM fields, first generation college students, and community college students.

Past Interns & Projects


Ginger Buck (Stanford University) - Respiration in crabs

Cyrus Hajian (Stanford University) - Plasma proteins that bind epibatidine

Jailah Mitchell (Foothill College) - Tadpole behavior on different diets

Kiera Nakamura (Stanford University) - microRNAs in tadpole brains


Penelope Baker (Stanford University) - Parental investment and offspring recognition

Marc Soong (Stanford University) - Synchronization of hormones during parental care


Nicholas Panyanouvong (Stanford University) - Spatial cognition in cane toads

Moremi Mabogunje (FootHill College) - Visual perception of parents in tadpoles

Amaris Lewis (Stanford University) - Infanticide or care in poison frog parents

Mei-Lan Steimle (Stanford University) - Robotics and tadpole communication

Joseph Monarres (Stanford University) - Neural basis of maternal care in wolf spiders

Mary Martinez (Stanford University) - Toxicity and gene expression in two sympatric poison frogs

Jordan McKinney (Stanford University) - Neural basis of aggression in tadpoles


Marina Luccioni (Stanford University) - Chemical ecology of nightmare fish

Ela Diffenbaugh (Stanford University) - Epigenetic imprints of nicotine during development

Jordan McKinney (Stanford University) - Neural basis of aggression in tadpoles


Christopher Jackson (Stanford University) - Piloting open field tests  in poison frogs

Sarah Ludington (Stanford University) - Role of FOXP2 in tadpole communication

Jordan McKinney (Stanford University) - Nonapeptide regulation of tadpole behavior

Jules Wyman (Stanford University) - Optimization of fecal sample barcoding to assess diet in poison frogs


Aditya Iyer (Indian Institute of Science, Khorana Scholarship) - Tadpole diet and toxicity

Harmony Alvarez (Stanford University) - Dopamine and tadpole aggression

Travis Ramirez (Stanford University) - Spatial memory in Dendrobates tinctorius