Student Programs

The CBM works with high school students in three outreach programs:

SMART teams working with Amino Acid Starter KitSMART (Students Modeling A Research Topic) Teams are trained in protein structure and function and computer visualization software, then work closely with a research mentor to design and build a physical model of a protein studied by the research lab, using rapid prototyping technology.


students with toober modelIn the Science Olympiad Protein Modeling Event, high school students use computer visualization software to examine a protein's structure, then fold an accurate backbone model of the protein using Mini-Toobers©. Students build one model before the competition and a different model at the competition. They also complete an exam that demonstrates their understanding of the relationship between protein structure and function.


CREST (Connecting Researchers, Educators and Students) is an NSF-funded project in which undergraduate students collaborate with a researcher and an educator to build a model of a protein useful to the researcher (similar to SMART teams), then work with the educator to develop educational materials to bring the research surrounding that protein into the classroom. Our partners in this project include Alverno College, Concordia University Wisconsin, Marquette University, Mt. Mary College, UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee.