University of Chicago COMputational Biology Outreach

Introduction to computational biology workshops for middle and high school students

Who we are

We are a group of graduate students, postdocs, researchers, and professors at the University of Chicago passoniate about sharing our love of computational biology with Chicago area middle and high school students!

What we do 

We run single and multi-day interactive workshops that both introduce students to foundational prgramming concepts through real-world biological problems and expose them to careers in the biomedical sciences. Our workshops feature short lectures on computational biology, guided and project-based coding sessions where students work through interactive workbooks, and talks by a diverse scientists at UChicago about their research and path to becoming a scientist. We have workshops designed for both middle and high school students and can customize to fit the needs of potential partners.

Our Mission


As the scale of data grows, computational skills are increasingly important in all areas of biological sciences. However, coding and computational science often appear “scary” and unapproachable to students and it’s often difficult to know where to start! Our mission is two-fold. First, we aim to demystify coding by providing guided workbooks that recquire no pre-installation and focus on real-world problems in biology rather than syntax and rote memoriztion. Second, we hope to inspire the next generation of diverse scientists by exposing students to a wide-array of career paths in computational biology and demonstrating the importantace computational skills across disciplines.

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