The Citizen Science Lab will partner with Duquesne University, CMU and Pittsburgh Public Schools to recruit students, team coaches and team mentors for the iGEM program.

The iGEM competition is an annual world-wide synthetic biology competition, an international event.  Teams represent the United States, Canada, Chile, Kazakhstan, Japan, South Korea, Egypt, South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, France, and Australia—among others. Multidisciplinary teams work throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall to build genetically engineered systems. 

Previous iGEM projects addressed a variety of real-world problems, such as turning agricultural waste into biofuels and working to cure Alzheimer’s disease.


Students participating in this program will train for and fine-tune the essential lab skills needed to successfully compete in the annual iGEM World Championship Jamboree, which is held in Boston, MA. Students must complete the entire program to get free travel to Boston.

Check out last year's team and project.

Checkout the App our team created.

Students with interest in Biology, Web Design, Graphic Arts, 3D printing, App development and Robotics are encouraged to apply. 

Students will receive:​

  • expert training in research lab techniques

  • free registration, travel, room and board to the annual Jamboree in Boston


  • Must be in high school (grades 9-12)

  • Must live or go to school in Homewood (Westinghouse students highly desired)

More info on iGem and the Giant Jamboree:


The ICE-T (Integrating Computational & Experimental Technologies) project will teach students in the computer coding language and experimental techniques required to examine the physiology, biochemistry and voltage potential of microbial fuel cells (MFC) made from river sediment. There are two phases to the ICE-T project.


Phase one will concentrate on teaching the Python coding language. The second phase of the project will concentrate on the science behind the MFC and how to construct it. Using biosensors and the programming skills learned in phase 1, students will collect and analyze data from the MFC and then formulate a hypothesis on how to increase the voltage output of the MFC. Students will then present their projects at the PJAS competition in February.


This innovative project bridges the disciplines of renewable energy research, biological analysis, and computer science into one.

Grades 9-12


Seaperch is an innovative underwater robotics program that equips students with the resources they need to build an underwater Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) in an in-school or out-of-school setting. Students build the ROV from a kit comprised of low-cost, easily accessible parts, following a curriculum that teaches basic engineering and science concepts with a marine engineering theme.


The SeaPerch Program provides students with the opportunity to learn about robotics, engineering, science, and mathematics (STEM) while building an underwater ROV as part of a science and engineering technology curriculum. Throughout the project, students will learn engineering concepts, problem-solving, teamwork, and technical applications. 


Middle and High School 


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