Undergraduate Vacation Bursary (Including Remote Working)
The undergraduate vacation bursary supports work on agreed research projects during the summer vacation.
The purpose of the bursaries is to provide undergraduates considering a research career with experience of plant pathology research. For experimental projects this will involve practical experience in a plant pathology laboratory. However, following the success of our “Lockdown Bursaries” in Summer 2020, funds can also be used to support “virtual” projects which can be done by a student working entirely remotely. This could include, for example, a literature review, bioinformatics, reanalysis of an existing data set, mathematical modelling, or any combination of these areas. Projects can be 6, 8 or 10 weeks in length.
To view previous awards and reports written by the students click these links: 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005-1999. In 2020 we also ran ‘lockdown bursaries’ – click here to read the reports
Information for students – Added 11th March 2022
The deadline for applications is the 15th April 2022.
Students should be available for interviews between 16th and 22nd April, if requested by the supervisor. Notification of the results of applications will be made after consideration by the Education sub-committee of BSPP Board, and decisions made in the last week of April.
Applications are invited from students to apply for the bursary for any of the outlined projects. Students should be in the middle year(s) of their degree course – i.e. currently be in years one or two of a three year course, or years one, two or three of a four year course – and do not have to be BSPP members. Final year students can apply as well only if they can provide a statement explaining how the pandemic has affected their ability to gain research experience and a statement that they have not been admitted onto a course of PhD study. The student will be required to supply: i) a full cv; ii) an academic transcript (university exam results achieved so far); iii) a 500 word statement on why they wish to do the project; and iv) contact details for an academic referee (this must be a different person to the chosen supervisor). Students should choose at least two projects, and indicate their first, second and third choice. Projects are either Experimental (lab/field based), Remote/virtual, Computational (on site) or mix of two or three options. You can download a PDF here of all the projects. The projects will be hosted in the chosen project university/institute. Up to 15 bursaries will be awarded on a competitive basis. The applications will be assessed based on student academic excellence, motivation and understanding of the project that they are applying for. Some supervisors may wish to interview students before making a decision.
Students based in the United Kingdom will receive a sum of £350 per week to cover living expenses. The amount is set with reference to the United Kingdom living wage; amounts granted for any students living outside the United Kingdom will be pegged to the local equivalent. An amount for consumables/project related expenses of £500 will also be provided. However, for remote projects which are to be done by a student working in a developing country, additional funds can be provided to up to a total of £1000. This could, for example, be used to purchase computer equipment or internet access, although a case for these additional funds would need to be made by the supervisor as part of the application.
In the event of a successful application, cheques will be made payable to the institution at which the student will work (or for remote projects, the institution which will administer the project). The institution should arrange payment in arrears subject to satisfactory performance (and, if relevant, attendance). Insurance cover for BSPP-supported bursaries is the responsibility of the institution hosting the student. Such cover indemnifies any insurance claims on the BSPP during the tenure of the awards
Students will also be granted a year’s free membership of the BSPP.
The final payment should be made upon the completion of the project. Students are required to write a short report (500 words maximum) which has to be submitted to BSPP via the supervisor. This will be published in the BSPP Newsletter. There is also a requirement for students to provide a short video blog describing their project and their experience: examples from last year are available at https://www.bspp.org.uk/funds/bspp-undergraduate-lockdown-bursary-fund/bspp-lockdown-project-students-share-their-experiences/. The students will also be asked to give a short presentation on their project at an online meeting run by the BSPP in Autumn 2022.
Projects list for the BSPP Undergraduate Vacation Bursary Fund 2022 – Applications are now closed
Click ‘Read more’ on each project title for a pop up box showing all details.
|Entry #1141: Resistance is Futile: searching for Fusarium Head Blight susceptibility factors in wheat. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). John Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7UH United Kingdom|
|Entry #1143: Wilting our Coffee: the evolution of Fusarium xylarioides and its effectors. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). Exhibition Rd, London, London SW72AZ United Kingdom|
|Entry #1144: Biofilm formation in Zymoseptoria tritici. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). Biosciences Exeter, Streatham Campus, DEVON EX4 4QD United Kingdom|
|Entry #1145: Wheat phenotyping during root infection by take-all and functional characterization of wheat defense genes. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). West Common, Harpenden, AL5-2JQ, United Kingdom|
|Entry #1146: Boosting plant disease resistance through RNAi hairpin introduction. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). Stacey Building, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7NJ United Kingdom|
|Entry #1156: Investigation of diversity in environmental Pseudomonas syringae in Prunus spp. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). NIAB, 93 Lawrence Weaver Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB3 0LE United Kingdom|
|Entry #1166: Identification of the subcellular localisation of fungal pathogen effectors. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based) and Remote/virtual. Department of Biointeractions and Crop Protection, Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden, Hertfordshire AL5 2JQ United Kingdom|
|Entry #1169: Study of proteolysis of plant immune receptors. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). South Parks Road Oxford, Oxfordshire OX13RB United Kingdom|
|Entry #1173: Establishing a Cereal-Pseudomonas Pathosystem for Comparative Phytopathology Research. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). John Innes Centre, Colney Lane Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7UH United Kingdom|
|Entry #1178: Disrupting NLR networks: the case of plant-parasitic nematodes. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). 93 Lawrence Weaver Road, Cambridge, Cambridgeshire CB30LE, United Kingdom|
|Entry #1179: Ash dieback: analysis and modelling of the Realising Ash Potential field trials. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based, Remote/virtual, Computational, on site. Dept. Mathematics and Statistics, University of Strathclyde, 26 Richmond Street, Glasgow, Glasgow G1 1XH United Kingdom|
|Entry #1181: Genome Assembly and Prediction of Metabolic and Functional Trait Profiles of Pectobacterium Species Isolated from Soft Rotting Potato Tubers. Read more. Type of Project: Remote/virtual. Bower Building, University Avenue, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Lanarkshire G12 8QQ, United Kingdom|
|Entry #1183: Investigation of the effectiveness of fungicides for control of phoma stem canker pathogens of oilseed rape. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). College Lane Hatfield, Hertfordshire AL10 9AB United Kingdom|
|Entry #1159: Is the function of a key effector protein in the fungal plant pathogen Z. tritici specific to pathogenic lifestyles? Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). Biointeractions and Crop Protection, Rothamsted Research, Harpenden, Herts AL5 2JQ, United kingdom|
|Entry #1158: Investigating the role of cell wall components in response to Fusarium graminearum infection in Arabidopsis thaliana. Read more. Type of Project: Experimental (lab/field based). Biointeractions and Crop Protection Department, Centenary Building, West Common, Harpenden, Herts AL5 2JQ, United Kingdom|
THIS DEADLINE HAS NOW PASSED FOR 2022