Research Volunteer

What you can get as a research volunteer at the Zhang Lab

  • Lab experience and qualification
  • Recommendations for graduate school/medical school, research fellowship application
  • Research credit for undergraduate research
  • Opportunity for stipend or fellowship
  • Interaction with mature scientist
  • Camaraderie and a sense of belonging
  • Opportunity to pursue graduate school training in the Pharmaceuticals Sciences Program at one of the TOP Pharmacy Schools in the US.

Expectations for Research Volunteers at the Zhang Lab

Time commitment: Undergraduates and master students are expected to commit at least one full year, with 10-15 hours per week to research in the Zhang lab. You may not be participating in full-time research in another lab at the same time you are working in the Zhang lab.

Expectations of time use: When in the lab or the office, you should be working on building your research skills through work on your research projects, your grad mentors project area, grant efforts (if any), data analysis/collation, project slide decks, literature searching or literature reading, or methods write-ups.  

  • Time spent on social media, etc should be done elsewhere and not on lab time.  
  • These downtimes (non-experimental times) will be a part of your grad mentors’ evaluation of you! 

Training and independent research project: Your training time is expected to take ~ 1 semester. If you are interested in an independent research project, you should (1) discuss it with your mentor on the topic, (2) apply for undergraduate student research fellowship (for undergraduate student funding opportunities, see the Resource Section on the lab website and UF undergraduate Research website)

Presentation: Each semester, you will present at one lab meeting (~30 min depending on the presentation format), either on your project or by completing a literature article critique. 

Scholarship writing support: Undergraduate students are strongly encouraged to apply to UF Scholarship opportunities (please check UF undergraduate Research website and the Resource Section on the lab website ) after ~6 months in the lab. 

  1. For other scholarship opportunities, please discuss with Fan; in addition, you can discuss with your academic advisors; 
  1. You should send your draft application documents to Fan 4 weeks prior to the deadline to get edits. You should have your grad mentor review these documents before sending them to Fan. 

Letter of Recommendation: Your graduate mentor and Fan will provide a letter of recommendation. The quality of the letter will be based on your performance in the lab. For recommendation letter requests, please provide four weeks notice to your graduate mentor and Fan prior to the recommendation deadline, and all listed materials three weeks in advance: Provide a description of the program, a statement of interest (or any associated essays for the application), and your most updated resume/CV. Include in the email bullet points describing any points you would like specifically mentioned in the recommendation letter. 


Department of Pharmaceutics • College of Pharmacy • University of Florida

1345 Center Drive PO BOX 100494, Medical Science Building, Room P3-26 Gainesville, FL 32610