Pre-STAR Briefing Information

Welcome to the 2016 STAR Program!   

For all new STAR students, we hope that you have a great summer with an outstanding research experience.  For those of you who are returning STAR students – welcome back and hopefully, now that you've had some initial research experience, this summer will only be more enriching and enlightening.

The schedule for the 2016 STAR Laboratory Orientation will be posted here.

Students are expected to conduct research full time for a 10 week period within these dates: Monday, June 6th - Friday, August 12th. Any vacation or sick leave must be agreed upon with your mentor. In the past, we have discovered working on a research project for the first time can be a bit overwhelming, and everyone benefits from some guidance to help them get started. Therefore, we suggest a few PRE-STAR tips that might help you to get things in motion before your actual STAR summer begins:

1.  Meet with your mentor early to discuss your project, goals, expectations, laboratory environment and possible Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) classes that might be needed. Getting an IACUC protocol approved can take a long time, so talk to your mentor early. With your mentor, prepare a time-line of your project to “keep on track”.  There should be a designated time set up between you and your mentor weekly to discuss what is going right, and most importantly, what might be going wrong.   Learn all safety regulations and protocols, and who to go to for questions or concerns. 

2.  STAR students interested in working in one of the research laboratories in San Diego should contact either Dr. Peter Ernst ( or Dr. Christina Sigurdson ( to identify the best match and to discuss logistics for housing.  Booking dorms early is a necessity. 

3.  Lab Introductions:  Make sure that you are introduced to everyone especially key personnel in the laboratory, department and/or center.  It is helpful if your mentor designates a grad student or post-doc to work with you, especially when your mentor is away.  Make sure that you know who you will be working with for specific aspects of your project (learning techniques, etc.) 

4.  Ordering Supplies:  Find out from your mentor who you should go to for ordering supplies or materials and get things ordered early! Physically, go through the lab, look in drawers, cabinets, ect. so that you are aware of where supplies are kept. 

5.  Get Involved! Ask to be involved in weekly lab meetings and any lab seminars or writing sessions – the more you are exposed to in this short time, the better. 

6.  Have fun – enjoy!  Most importantly, while learning and working in your lab, remember there will be frustrations and a few disappointments as well as days that everything will go right.  These are all normal and part of the world of research, so remember to enjoy it all!

7.  IMPORTANT--Animal Care and Use (ACU) 101--INFORMATION:

Link to course here.

The main course is required only once and there is a three year retraining requirement, which is a 15 question online quiz. 
If you are not currently employed by the University or have not yet taken this class, first contact today and they will confirm users who have accounts and set up accounts for new users.  Please call Jessica Davis at 530-752-9997 if you have any questions.

Faculty/Staff/Paid Student Employees

To access the e-course follow these instructions:

Go to, put in your Kerberos passphrase
Enter “Animal” into search field
In lower right corner click “Register”
Choose “e-course: Animal Care and Use 101” (click on small box to left of title)
Click “Submit”
Click “Start”

Temporary Affiliates (TAF) and Non-Paid Students

NOTE: In order to access the e-course you will need to contact Staff Development and Professional Services at to activate your account. 
Once your account has been activated, follow these instructions to access the e-course:

Go to, put in your Kerberos passphrase
Enter “Animal” into search field
In lower right corner click “Register”
Choose “e-course: Animal Care and Use 101” (click on small box to left of title)
Click “Submit”
Click “Start”


If you would like a certificate after completing the module:

At the site
On the left side of the screen under “Quick Links”, click “Training Transcripts”
Click on the class name “e-course Animal Care and Use 101”
On the left side of the screen there is a certificate icon
Click on the icon and your certificate will appear