Boot Camp 2016

Interdisciplinary Boot Camp in Quantitative Biology

JANUARY 4-15, 2016


Proteomics, Room 120

Proteomics Boot Camp Promotional Video

Visit our YouTube channel for other videos

To view the full-length 2016 symposium video click here 


The Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine and the graduate program in Quantitative Biomedicine hosts an annual boot camp to augment interdisciplinary undergraduate and graduate education for quantitative and biological students and scientists at all levels. The goal is to introduce participants to the value of integrating quantitative biology education with that afforded by other disciplines of study, including mathematics, physics, computer science, statistics, chemistry, engineering, medicine, and the life sciences.

The immersive two-week Boot Camp of 2016 will focus on the discovery and development of small molecule drugs that bind to the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). EGFR is central to cell growth and, unsurprisingly, represents an important cancer drug target.

Boot camp might interest you if you have ever:

  • wondered how to use your talents to help solve challenging problems in biology that require interdisciplinary team efforts
  • wondered what kinds of skills and jobs are associated with discovering and developing drugs
  • wished you could figure out who might be valuable partners for collaboration 

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Boot Camp Basics


WHO:     All students (graduate and undergraduate), staff, senior researchers, and faculty

WHAT:    Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology Boot Camp: Drug Discovery and Development

  • Talks on fundamental and applied aspects associated with the myriad stages of drug discovery and development
  • Decision-making and activities as employees of a hypothetical biotechnology company charged with developing new drugs
  • Hands-on simulations and exercises using mathematical models, statistical methods, and computational chemistry; medicinal chemistry designs and analyses; modeling of pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes; and analyses of real cancer data that enable individual treatment planning
  • Tours of some of Rutgers state-of-the-art facilities for interrogating biological phenomena
  • Sharing of insights and information with teammates and the larger group as part of the drug discovery and development process
  • Understanding of the processes involved in bringing a program from target selection, lead discovery/optimization, preclinical development, drug candidate selection, patenting, preparation of the Investigational New Drug Application, the clinical trials process, to the final FDA review/decision
  • The Boot Camp will conclude with a student-led simulation of the Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee (ODAC) meeting leading to FDA approval for the company’s new drug candidate
  • A unique form of education and fun!

WHEN:     Jan. 4-15, 2016

WHERE:  The Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine (“Proteomics”), with field trips

WHY:      This 2-week immersive program will be very educational and fun!

HOW:      Register for the course and become a member of an interdisciplinary drug discovery and                development boot camp team. 


Plan A: 2 credits, Pass/Fail, full two weeks: $83 Student fee + cost of 2 credits.  Tuition costs can be found here

Plan B: A limited number of positions will be provided at no cost to students with financial need.  In this case, Boot Camp will appear on your transcript as a 0 credit, Pass/Fail course.  To pursue this possibility, send an email to Gail Ferstandig Arnold at

Drop-Ins:  Members of the Rutgers community are encouraged to attend individual lectures and the ODAC meeting simulation on a space-available basis. 


Final Schedule

     Download Schedule 


Space-Limited Events

Most events will be in Proteomics room 120 where there will be seats for ~100 people.  90 people will be allowed to register and others will be welcome to drop in for any events taking place in this room.

The tours will take place at other Rutgers facilities and will be limited to registrants only. There will be electronic sign-up forms made available during Boot Camp for registered participants who wish to attend tours.


PLAN A:  Registration for the Boot Camp as a 2-credit, Pass/Fail course may be done through the Winter Session office for students participating in the full 2-week program.  This will appear on your transcript.

Graduate level:  16:118:615:01 Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology Boot Camp

Undergraduate level:  01:556:482:01 Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology Boot Camp

Cost:  $83 Student fee + cost of 2 credits (found here)

PLAN B:  A limited number of positions will be provided at no cost to students with financial need.  In this case, Boot Camp will appear on your transcript as a 0-credit, Pass/Fail course.  This possibility will be by special arrangement only (please contact Gail Ferstandig Arnold at ).


1.    First on the Boot Camp Registration page: until Dec. 21st 
2.    Then on Rutgers’ Winter Session Registration page: until Dec. 21st  There is no need for a Special Permission number if you register before Boot Camp is full.  After Boot Camp is full, you may request inclusion on a waiting list by contacting Gail Ferstandig Arnold ( )

Important note: if you are a graduate student in the GSBS, you will also need to fill out a "student exchange program" form in order to get the credits transferred to the Spring 2016 transcript.  As part of the process, you will need to gather approval signatures from your advisor, the GSBS dean, and Gail Ferstandig Arnold.

Registration on both sites is required.  Entry into Boot Camp will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis (for those who register on BOTH sites).

For undergraduates, this cost will be in addition to your annual tuition fees.  You may wish to discuss with your counselor ways in which you might take Boot Camp as one of your electives.

For graduates, tuition can either come from your first-year course-credit allowance (i.e., as a teaching assistant or graduate fellow) or from lab funds (and will count toward the credits required for your Master’s and/or Ph.D. degree).


 1. Do I need to take any prerequisites?

No prerequisites are required.  The material will be presented assuming that you are capable but not knowledgeable.

2. How many hours a day will Boot Camp be?

Boot Camp will go from roughly 9 AM-5 PM Monday through Friday of both weeks (with the Friday events likely to run a bit later).

3. What will I need to do to earn the 2 credits and pass the course?

To earn 2 credits, you will be expected to participate in the full spectrum of activities from 9 AM-5 PM of both weeks, as a member of a team and a contributor to the whole group.

4. What can I attend without being registered?

As a non-registered individual, you are free to attend any lectures and the ODAC meeting simulation on a space-available basis.

5. What should I do if I cannot afford to pay for the 2 credits?

You may request special consideration to attend the full 2-week Boot Camp despite financial need.

6. What can I do for housing if I live too far away to commute to Boot Camp?

There are two possibilities:

  1. There are relatively inexpensive rooms that can be shared at a nearby Extended Stay Hotel
  2. With some luck and generosity, a fellow student might be able to offer a bed or couch

Please contact Gail Ferstandig Arnold ( if you are in need of a place to stay.

If you have additional questions and cannot find your answers in any of the various Boot Camp tabs on this website, please contact Gail Ferstandig Arnold ( ). 


Use the following link to join the 2016 Boot Camp Sakai site:
Log in with your netid. External users must select Email Login and previously requested access. Contact Luz Fajardo ( if you need access.

Select Yes to join site

You now have membership to the 2016 Interdisciplinary Boot Camp in Quantitative Biology


Contact Us

Please send all questions and comments to:

Gail Ferstandig Arnold, Ph.D.
Director, Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology Boot Camp