An Invitation to Your Future

Graduate student in a lab

Science is a journey. Throughout human history, there has never been a better time to join in on the excitement of scientific discovery. A graduate degree is your first step to embarking on a lifetime of scientific achievement. In particular, this is a great time to be pursuing research in Microbiology and Immunology. New technologies and experimental tools are enabling us to make unprecedented advances in understanding fundamental biological processes that directly impact human health. However, infectious diseases continue to challenge our best scientists and physicians and emerging/re-emerging pathogens are daily features in world news.

The Department of Microbiology & Immunology at the University of Western Ontario offers a research intensive program that provides the opportunity and cutting-edge resources for graduate-level research on many of the most significant problems in biomedical science. Specific questions we are answering include: How do micro-organisms interact with their hosts detrimentally (bacterial and viral pathogenesis) or beneficially (probiotics)? How does the host respond to infection or transplantation and what is the basis of autoimmune disease (immunology)? How is normal cell growth restriction perturbed in tumour cells (the molecular basis of cancer)?

Our goal in the Department of Microbiology & Immunology is not only to probe the interface of infection and immunity, but also to train the next generation of young scientists, equipping each with the knowledge and research skills to discover the answers to important biomedical problems and to combat disease in the 21st century.

Our award-winning faculty mentors include basic scientists and clinicians recruited from all over the world. In our highly collaborative research environment, they each contribute expertise and technology garnered from their own training experiences, which often occurred at prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Stanford, MIT, Oxford and the NIH. Individual faculty specialize in a broad and diverse array of scientific disciplines, including bacteriology, immunology, biochemistry, molecular biology, cell biology, oncology, virology and developmental biology, providing an unsurpassed range of research possibilities in our graduate program. World leaders in relevant scientific areas participate in our weekly Infection and Immunity Seminar Series as well as our annual Infection & Immunity Research Forum. During these visits our trainees interact informally and discuss their research with these outstanding external scientists. This offers students a fresh perspective on their projects, fosters new collaboration and provides important networking opportunities.

As you browse through our website, we hope to convey our excitement for research, our commitment to excellence, and our enthusiasm for teaching and learning. A graduate career is not easy. Indeed, there are many long hours of study and many days and evenings in the laboratory. However, the rewards are considerable: the joy and excitement of discovery, the satisfaction and appreciation of truly understanding complex biological processes, and the knowledge that you are contributing in a meaningful way to human health.

We invite you to invest your future in a graduate degree in Microbiology & Immunology at Western University.

Sung Kim, Graduate Chair