Dr.  Fern Tsien, Assistant Dean for Medical Student Research



Please refer to the 2020, 2021, and 2022 Research Symposia HERE for project ideas and potential mentors.

Medical Student Research Committee Research Faculty Database 

Faculty Interests Database  lists both clinical and basic science faculty throughout the School of Medicine and their research interests


Fern Tsien, Ph.D. is the Assistant Dean for Medical Student Research in the School of Medicine.   

The Office of Medical Student Research offers research training and resources to medical students, resident and fellows as well as faculty who are involved in research training. Our goal is to make getting involved with research as easy as possible.  Dr. Tsien guides students to research opportunities and helps facilitate the research component of the curriculum.  This office coordinates the Summer Research Opportunities, the research electives, the Medical Student Honors Program and opportunities for year-long research experiences.  

Medical Student Research Opportunities                                                                        

LSUHSC Medical Student Summer Internship Program

Dr. Fern Tsien is the Assistant Dean of Medical Student Research and directs a summer internship program.  The program is designed to provide medical students with an experience in clinical and translational research during their summer break.  This program is critical to students who are considering careers in academic medicine, because it allows them to see first-hand what research entails. They are exposed to the excitement, rewards, trials and tribulations of biomedical research.  Approximately 30 medical students spend up to 8 weeks in this program each summer.

Students choose a mentor and research project based on their particular interestsand learn to conduct clinical or basic science research. The mentors conduct research in laboratories or clinics at LSUHSC, UMC, Pennington Biomedical Research Institute or Children’s Hospital of New Orleans.  In addition, they receive training in the responsible conduct of research, oral and poster presentation skills that prepare them to attend scientific meetings.  All students present their research results at the Medical Student Research Day in the fall.  

 A. Duration - The medical student must make a commitment to work with their mentor for 8 weeks.

B. Qualifications - Applicants must be registered at LSU School of Medicine                                                                                                                                         and be in good academic standing. Research experience is not required

C. Application - Summer Research Fellowship application packet must include:

      A cover letter describing your research and career goals

  •       A completed application form
  •       A resume describing schools attended, previous job experience, etc
  •       Candidates can apply online. 

D. Deadline - February 15th  

For more information click here.

Questions? Contact the program coordinator (SummerResearch@lsuhsc.edu).



School of Medicine Dean, Steve Nelson, with medical student researchers Ashley Henderson and George Jeha.


The Honors Research Program in the School of Medicine supplements the regular curriculum and is designed to challenge the exceptional student with an independent research program that encompasses basic and/or clinical sciences in the pursuit of a problem of scientific interest. Students who have performed well academically during the 1st year of medical school and are interested in continuing their summer research, are invited to apply to the Honors Program during their second year. Research is performed part time in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th years of medical school. In the spring of their 4th year, students are required to submit a written report in manuscript format. and will graduate with "Honors in Research".

At Precommencement, the Honors Program candidates are acknowledged and their achievements become a part of their permanent academic record. It is expected that the Honors Program will provide the students with an in depth research experience and serve as an exciting intellectual challenge.


  • LSUHSC medical students currently enrolled in their 2nd year (L2s) 
  • Research experience via the Summer Research Internship Program, Research Elective MCLIN198, or equivalent
  • Good academic standing by the LSUHSC School of Medicine

Expectations of the program include:

  • Conducting part time research under the supervision of a faculty mentor throughout medical school
  • Presenting the research project at the LSUHSC Medical Research Symposium
  • Submitting an annual report with research updates and accomplishments
  • By the spring pf the 4th year, students are required to have published the results of their project or submit a written report of a quality which can be submitted for future publication
  • Good academic standing throughout the length of the program

Applications to the 2023 Honors Program are due by 5:00 on August 29th. Click here to apply. 

For more information, contact the program director, Dr. Fern Tsien (FMille@lsuhsc.edu) or the program coordinator (SoMHonorsProgram@lsuhsc.edu)



         Associate Dean Robert Maupin with medical student Adrienne Murphy, First Place (tie) Research Day 2019



COMBINED MD, PhD PROGRAM -There is also an MD/PhD training program at LSUHSC.  The traditional course for the program is the first two years of medical school followed by 3-5 years in graduate school to complete the Ph.D.  Students then return to the 3rdand 4thyears of medical school to complete the the MD degree.  Students are provided a tuition waiver for the first two years of medical school through the school of medicine.  During the graduate school portion of the program, students receive both a tuition waiver and a stipend, through the department in which they complete their dissertation research.  Information on the program:  http://graduatestudies.lsuhsc.edu/md_phd.aspx               http://www.medschool.lsuhsc.edu/admissions/Programs.aspx



Dongjoon (Jason) Kim
Mentors:Dr. Inga Kristaponyte, Dr. Bhagwat Alapure, Dr. Jennifer J. LentzLSUHSC, Neuroscience Center of Excellence, Department of Otorhinolaryngology