Potential trainees

The Campbell lab trains undergraduates, graduate students (including MD/PhD students), and postdocs in translational research. High school students can also apply for research experiences. More than 90% of the undergraduates who rotate through the lab are interested in becoming clinicians and transition to medical school. All of our graduate students have continued to postdoc positions. Postdocs who have transitioned to tenure-track faculty positions include Stuart Campbell and Charles Chung.

Graduate students and postdocs

If you are interested in the lab, please read our lab policies to get a flavor of how we operate. Then send a detailed email to Ken Campbell at k.s.campbell@uky.edu explaining why you are interested in the lab and some general research areas you may be interested in. You may find some of the instructions provided below for undergraduates helpful when you contact us.

Undergraduate students

We are always keen to explain what we do to students who are interested in research. We also want to help advance science by training new researchers. Our lab is a great place to learn how to perform experiments that could ultimately enhance patient care.

We have listed some of our guidelines and expectations below. You should also read our lab policies to learn more about how we operate. If you have questions, email Ken Campbell at k.s.campbell@uky.edu.

Guidelines and expectations

  • Research is complex and it takes a long time to get good at it. We normally need students to commit to at least 2 semesters in the lab before we even consider them. If you are a senior, with 3 weeks left before you leave Lexington, we will not be able to help you gain research experience.

  • You get out what you put in. We require students to spend at least 4 hours per week in the lab and some of our trainees have spent 20+ because they love it. You won't make progress with 30 minutes a week.

  • Most students start as volunteers but we can occasionally find some funding for students who have worked in the lab for at least a semester.

  • Our goal is to help you become an expert in biomedical research with a special emphasis on cardiac contractility and heart failure. Some of our students have gone on to medical school (most who apply get in) but we have alumni who have pursued PhDs in mathematics, computer science, and chemical engineering as well. One of our ex-students works in community-oriented legal support.

  • Everybody in the lab takes turns doing mundane tasks. If you join the lab, you will probably spend your first few weeks washing glassware. As you learn more about our work, and gain experience, you will be able to start learning new techniques. In a couple of months, you might be able to perform experiments that very few people in the world have ever attempted. But you will probably still spend at least a little time washing dishes :-)

  • If you want to join the lab, here are some useful tips

    • Learn about what we do by reading this website

    • Read at least two of our papers

    • Write an email to Ken at k.s.campbell@uky.edu and

      • explain who you are

      • what you want to do after you leave UK

      • what you liked about the papers you read

      • why specifically you are interested in performing research with us. (Don't just say, "I was really excited to read about your research" and leave it at that. It makes us think that you are sending the same e-mail to lots of different labs and haven't put in the effort to learn about us.)

      • Attach your CV and/or transcript, or a link to an online profile.

  • We perform world-class research and we are relentless in our pursuit of excellence. Most students who join our lab initially underestimate the effort it takes to succeed. Be prepared to bring your best game every time.