BCB Orientation Schedule

Monday, August 15, 2016 - 9:00am
Event Type: 

Orientation Schedule for BCB


Including activities or information sponsored by or provided by:


  • Genetics and Genomics Interdepartmental Graduate Program
  • P3, Predictive Plant Phenomics Training Grant
  • International Student and Scholars
  • Environmental Health and Safety
  • The Graduate College
  • The Registrar's Office


The Graduate College has an on-line orientation for New Students here:  http://www.grad-college.iastate.edu/orientation/.


Wednesday, August 10

International Students and Scholars Office - immigration session, 1:30 in the Great Hall of the Memorial Union. (Another session of this takes place August 18 but it conflicts with the end of the meeting with the BCB Chair and instructors of Stat 430 and BCB 567.)


Thursday, August 11 and Friday, August 12

P3 - Genomics Data Carpentry Workshop, 1306 Elings Hall: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm each day. Lunch and refreshment breaks will be provided.


  • This Data Carpentry workshops is for any graduate student researcher who will have data they want to analyze, and no prior computational experience is required
  • The focus of this workshop will be on working with genomics data and data management and analysis for genomics research
  • We will cover project setup, connecting to and using cloud computing, the command line for sequence quality control and bioinformatics workflows, and R for data analysis and visualization. We will not be teaching any particular bioinformatics tools, but the foundational skills that will allow you to conduct any analysis and analyze the output of a genomics pipeline
  • Participants should bring their laptops and plan to participate actively
  • By the end of the workshop, learners should be able to more effectively manage and analyze data and be able to apply the tools and approaches directly to their ongoing research

Data Carpentry's aim is to teach researchers basic concepts, skills, and tools for working with data so that they can get more done in less time, and with less pain.  Enrollment is limited to the first 30 respondents. Please register here by July 31st

Organizer: Adina Howe

Instructors: Jin Choi, Fan Yang, Carolyn Lawrence-Dill

Who: This course is aimed at graduate students. No prior computational experience is required.

Requirements: Data Carpentry's teaching is hands-on, so participants are encouraged to bring in and use their own laptops to insure the proper setup of tools for an efficient workflow once you leave the workshop. (We will provide instructions on setting up the required software several days in advance, and the classroom will have computers with the software installed). There are no pre-requisites, and we will assume no prior knowledge about the tools. Participants are required to abide by Software Carpentry's Code of Conduct.


Monday, August 15 –

ISSO - English Placement Test, 8:30 to noon: in 125 Kildee —Alec Knight isorient@iastate.edu said that this may be the only session for grad students.

BCB Orientation event: 11:30 to 1:30; Location: 1102 MBB; Function: Lunch with all new students and BCB program coordinator, Trish Stauble.  Graduate Student Organization (GSO) Board may attend as well to introduce the GSO…

BCB Orientation event: 5 to 7 p.m.; Location: 1102 MBB; Function: Dinner with current students…meet student mentors?


Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Lab Refresher Course, location: 1160 Molecular Biology Building

Linda Wild, the program coordinator for the Genetics and Genomics Graduate Program has organized this wet-lab refresher course on Tuesday and Wednesday. Please let her know if you wish to attend. There may be opportunities for you to participate but space is limited so all 9 new students may not be able to take part.  It is a basic laboratory Boot Camp, the purpose of which, is to review basic lab procedures, build community, and aid in successful transition from undergraduate to graduate.  You need to wear long pants and solid hard shoes since this is a lab environment.  If at all possible, please try and complete lab safety training PRIOR to the activities.

  • 8:50 Arrive: location is 1160 Molecular Biology (NE corner, just off Atrium)

    • Wear long pants and solid hard shoes
    • It would be beneficial if you have completed the lab safety training as outlined below.
  • 8:50 till noon: Graduate Student assistants: Melanie Torrie, Bridget Janssen
  • 9:00: Walter Moss: hand out lab notebook; pippetting, solutions, dilutions. Will fill out lab notebook for next two days.
  • 10:00: Dior Kelly: Isolation (1 hour)
  • 12:00 lunch, 3034 Molecular Biology
  • 12:50 till 3:30 Graduate Student Assistants: Paul Otyama, Allison Birnbaum; 1160 Molecular Biology
  • 1:00 Dior Kelley: Load and begin running gels (30 min)
  • 1:30 Jackie Campbell: Introduction to Database Searching (45 min) south area of 1160 Molecular Biology
  • 2:15 Jeff Essner: Review Basic Chemistry (45 min)
    • Molarity, google plasmid map, exercise
  • 3:00 Hua Bai: Review and photograph gels and discuss results; Take photograph with cell phones
  • 3:30 end

Wednesday, August 17

Lab Refresher Course, location: 1160 Molecular Biology Building

  • 8:50 Arrive
  • 9:00 Gary Polking: PCR Introduction (30 minutes) PCR Exercise (1 hour 30 minutes)
    • Handout: The Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)
  • 11:00 Laura Schultz and Tes Posekany: Pour gels
  • 12:00 Lunch, 3034 Molecular Biology
  • 1:00 Laura Schultz and Tes Posekany: load gels, prep under buffer
  • 1:30 Break and walk to Bassham Lab in 1043 Carver Co-Lab (Northwest across parking lot)
  • 1:45 Bassham Lab: Microscopy, Chemical Staining, Plant Cell Monitoring. Graduate Students are Junemarie Soto-Burgos and Yunting Pu.
  • 2:45 Break and walk back to 1160 Molecular Biology
  • 3:00 Jeff Essner View gels and discuss results
  • 3:30 Review lab notebooks
  • 3:45: End


Wednesday, August 17

P3 Activity (but open to a few of you, if you’d like to participate!):

Introduction to Science Communication (limited to 10 participants)

1:00 – 3:00 pm

PSI Conference Room

Presenter: Michael Dahlstrom, Associate Professor – Greenlee School of Journalism and Communication

Think your research is important? How should you share it with a non-expert audience? This session will explore both the technical and societal aspects of communicating science topics for general audiences.



Thursday, August 18

BCB Orientation event: 9-11 a.m., 1424 MBB – Function: IT at ISU: Levi Baber, LAS College IT manager, Jim Coyle, IT High Performance Computing manager: IT Resources at ISU; Jennifer Johnson, GDCB Department IT.

BCB Orientation event: 11 to 2 pm, 2034 MBB -- Function: Meeting and lunch with Dennis Lavrov and Carolyn Lawrence Dill; Oliver Eulenstein and Kris De Brabanter may also attend for part of the meeting to introduce Stat 430 and BCB 567.  After this meeting, there will be time to talk with Dennis about which courses you should register for the first semester.

ISSO - immigration sessions – 2 opportunities - take place on the afternoon of the 10th and the afternoon of the 18th, both at 1:30pm. The first one takes place in the Great Hall, the second in Carver 101. We will split people by Visa type for those sessions. Grad students only need to attend one of the two offered immigration sessions.

P3 Activity (but open to a few of you, if you’d like to participate!):

An Introduction to Statistical Reasoning for Plant Phenomics (limited to 30 participants)

Thursday, August 18 9:00 am – 12:00 pm

3105 Snedecor Hall

Presenter: Dan Nettleton, Laurence H. Baker Endowed Chair and Distinguished Professor – Department of Statistics

This session will introduce students to the basics of statistical reasoning.  Topics include experimental design, hypothesis testing, confidence intervals, prediction methods, and R statistical software.



Friday, August 19

Interdepartmental Graduate students from several majors will participate in this all day event in the Molecular Biology Building.  Information next to the presenter's name is his/her Department. In parenthesis are the interdepartmental Graduate programs they participate in.

  • BCB = Bioinformatics and Computational Biology.
  • GENET = Interdepartmental Genetics and Genomics.
  • MCDB = Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology
  • NEURO = Neuroscience
  • EEB = Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
  • IPB = Interdepartmental Plant Biology

Schedule for the Event

  • 8:30 a.m. Continental breakfast in 1102 Molecular Biology
  • 9:00 a.m. 1420 Molecular Biology: Tom Peterson, Genetics Development and Cell Biology: "Thinking like a Graduate Student--Leaving the Undergraduate Life Behind
  • 9:45 a.m. 1420 Molecular Biology: Justin Walley, Plant Pathology and Microbiology (GENET, MCDB, BCB, IBP)
  • 9:45 a.m. 1424 Molecular Biology: Geetu Tuteja, Genetics Development and Cell Biology (GENET, MCDB, BCB)
  • 10:30 a.m. 1424 Molecular Biology: Nicole Valenzuela, Ecology Evolution and Organismal Biology (GENET, BCB, EEB)
  • 10:30 a.m. 1428 Molecular Biology: Hui-Hsien Chou, Genetics Development and Cell Biology AND Computer Science (GENET, BCB)
  • 10:30 a.m. 4034 Molecular Biology: Steven Whitham, Plant Pathology and Microbiology (GENET, BCB, Plant Biology)
  • 11:15 a.m. 1420 Molecular Biology: Jeff Trimarchi, Genetics Development and Cell Biology (Genet, Neuro, MCDB, BCB)
  • 11:15 a.m. 1424 Molecular Biology: Dennis Lavrov, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (BCB, GENET, MCDB, EEB)
  • 11:15 a.m. 4034 Molecular Biology: Erik Vollbrecht, Genetics Development and Cell Biology (BCB, GENET, MCDB, Plant Biology)
  • Noon Lunch Atrium Molecular Biology
  • Noon to 2:00 p.m. Poster session Atrium Molecular Biology
  • Graduate student mentors invited to lunch
  • 2:00 p.m. 1424 Molecular Biology: Iddo Friedberg, Veterinary Microbiology and Preventive Medicine (VMPM) (Genet, BCB, Micro)
  • 2:00 p.m. 1428 Molecular Biology: Walter Moss, Biochemistry Biophysics and Molecular Biology
  • 2:45 p.m. 1420 Molecular Biology: Ravi Singh, Biomedical Sciences (GENET, MCDB, NEURO, TOX and BCB)
  • 3:30 p.m. 1424 Molecular Biology: Julien Roche, Biochemistry Biophysics and Molecular Biology
  • 3:30 p.m. 1428 Molecular Biology: W. Allen Miller, Plant Pathology and Microbiology (Plant Biology, MCDB, Genetics and Genomics, Micro, BCB, Biochemistry)


Please use the poster board next to your number as new students will have an information sheet. Posters maybe be set up after 11:00 a.m. in the Atrium of the Molecular Biology building on Friday, August 19. Poster Session is from noon to 2:00. You are encouraged to join the new students for lunch. Name tags will be available.

  • 1 Trimarchi Lab
  • 2 Trimarchi Lab
  • 3 Gupta Lab
  • 4 Valenzuela Lab
  • 5 Valenzuela Lab
  • 6 HH Chou Lab
  • 7 HH Chou Lab
  • 8 Peters Lab
  • 9 Peters Lab
  • 10 Peters Lab
  • 11 Friedberg Lab
  • 12 Friedberg Lab
  • 13 Friedberg Lab
  • 14 Zabotina Lab (GENET, MCDB, and Plant Biology)
  • 15 Trevor Nolan (Yanhai Yin Lab, GENET, Plant Biology)
  • 16 John Hsieh (Lamont Lab, GENET, BCB)


Lab Safety Orientation – An on-line orientation by Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S)

Please do this on-line.  It is really important for your safety.  Trish will be notified of your participation.

  • Setting up a login for Environmental Health and Safety Lab Training. This can be taken before you arrive or by the end of the first week. It takes a minimum of 1-2 business days to create your account. After you receive your login information you will (1) log into the learning management system, (2) click on the Course Catalog under My Menu, (3) scroll through the alphabetized ONLINE Course Catalog, and (4) click the Launch link next to the desired course. Take "Laboratory Safety: Core Concepts" and "Fire Safety and Extinguisher Training". Do not use Internet Explorer as your browser. Everything else should be okay.
  • Frequently asked questions about Environmental Health and Safety Training.
  • How do I allow pop-ups? On the left hand side of your top tool bar there are 3 horizontal bars that is referred to as a "hamburger". Click on it. A menu will appear. Click on options. Click on content. You then have the option to allow pop-up windows entirely or as exceptions such as: http://www.ehs.iastate.edu/ and https://training.ehs.iastate.edu/IOWASU/

If you have time to do the orientation for lab safety training in person on August 16 or 17, please do so.  After you establish an EH&S login, use these directions to register for the orientation here.  FAQ’s about Lab Safety Training are here.


Registration Deadlines/Fees

Aug. 19, Friday                  

•  Last day to initiate registration in person without a late registration fee in the Registrar's Student Scheduling Office, 10 Enrollment Services Center by 5 p.m. Registration may be initiated using AccessPlus until 11 p.m. Aug. 21 without a late registration fee.

Aug. 20, Saturday                  

• Fee payment deadline for fall. First payment (minimum due) or payment in full on AccessPlus.

Aug. 21, Sunday             

•  Last day to initiate registration through AccessPlus without a late registration fee. Registration must be completed by 11 p.m.

•  Last day to cancel registration on AccessPlus for fall to avoid tuition assessment. All courses must be dropped on AccessPlus by 11 p.m.


August 25, Thursday

Graduate student orientation; 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Alumni Center, 420 Beach Avenue -- The Graduate College and Graduate and Professional Student Senate (GPSS) invite incoming graduate and professional students to the Fall 2016 Graduate and Professional Student Orientation. Students should register online for the orientation, https://iastate.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_bl1sxZTWjg3CzRP.


  • 5:30 p.m. Food and refreshments will be served
  • 6:00 p.m. Welcome to ISU from ISU administrative leaders
  • 6:45 p.m. Representatives from student service organizations will be available to answer questions

Orientation information is also available on the Graduate College New Student Orientation website, http://www.grad-college.iastate.edu/orientation/.  A videotape of the orientation will be posted at this website following the event. 


International Students and Scholars Office


Graduate Student Orientation

Graduate Students are required to do all of the following things to complete the requirements for orientation