Frequently Asked Questions

If your question is not answered below, you can contact the following individuals for more information:

  • For questions about your stipend, tuition, reimbursements or travel: Marie Reed
  • For questions about time cards, salary, reimbursements or travel: Nicole Streicker
  • For questions about courses and course conflicts: Your Training Director


Whenever you need to miss a Learning Community session, please notify your Training Director and your Graduate Mentor.

If you find that you can’t fit the Learning Community or one of the Research Curriculum courses into your schedule because they conflict with courses you need to take for your major, talk to your Training Director. He or she will be able to help you find an alternative way to meet your BUILD requirements.

As a BUILD Scholar or Fellow, you will receive up to $1,500 for conference travel support for each of the year(s) in the BUILD Program. For detailed information on how to use those funds and request travel reimbursements, visit the Travel Guidelines page.

Notify your Training Director when you register for classes. In lieu of attending the Learning Community, you will be required to meet with your Graduate Mentor during their office hours. You will still have to complete all assignments that are associated with the Learning Community and will be granted access to the appropriate Learning Community Beachboard site to complete all relevant coursework.

If you can’t attend the BUILD Colloquia, which usually takes place during the Learning Community, you are required to attend a research colloquium outside of BUILD that is pre-approved by your Training Director. You will also need to fill out the non-BUILD Colloquium sheet found on Beachboard and submit it online.

You are required to work no less than 10 hours per week and on average 15 hours per week within your research lab.

The first step would be to ask your research mentor if there is any extra work that you could do. Examples include literature searches, journal club presentation, data cleaning, data entry, etc. If you are still running into issues with finding work to do, reach out to your Training Director and ask them for advice.

Although it is not ideal to switch mentors, sometimes it is necessary to make sure that you are getting the most out of your research experience and are gaining the skills and experience that will make you a viable candidate for graduate admission. You would switch mentors if it is your mentor’s decision (i.e., they think you would receive better mentorship elsewhere) or your decision (i.e., you feel you are not getting the most out of your research experience). In either case, you would notify your Training Director and must be approved by the BUILD Student Training Core Director BEFORE contacting new potential mentors. Sometimes issues can be resolved between trainees and mentors and a mentor switch will not be necessary, but other times, it’s in the best interest of the trainee to switch labs.