Emily KinnestonThe Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences maintains an active program of research that includes both clinical and basic science investigations relevant to women's health. Our research is supported by extramural and intramural funding & derived from a combination of federal, private and pharmaceutical sources.

Patient-oriented studies are conducted in the University of Vermont Medical Center hospital environment, which includes the 16-bed UVM General Clinical Research Center one of approximately 80 centers nationwide, and an excellent resource for clinical investigations. Basic science investigations are carried out in the Given Building, which is part of the Health Science Research Facility that houses The Robert Larner, M.D. College of Medicine at the University of Vermont. The Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences occupies approximately 4,000 square feet of space dedicated to laboratory investigation.

The Department is committed to supporting both clinical and basic research, and to the integration of research activity into our educational mission, which includes intern/residency training and fellowship programs in maternal-fetal medicine and reproductive endocrinology. In addition, our laboratories host medical students, graduate students, postdoctoral trainees, and undergraduates seeking to obtain direct, hands-on student experience in biomedical research. As described in associated links, there are ample opportunities for both student and patient participation in research activity, as well as external and internal funding mechanisms for providing research support.

The research, while under the broad aegis of women's health, is quite diverse, and includes ongoing investigations into the: 

Vascular Biology of Pregnancy
Educational Programming
Maternal and Neonatal Immunology and Infectious Disease
Global Women's Health and Family Planning
Healthcare Policy and Healthcare Services
Clinical Trials in Women's Health

Opportunities for Students

Our department offers several opportunities for research or scholarly activities in areas including basic research in reproductive biology, global health, family planning, educational research, quality and policy in women’s health, clinical and translational research in women’s cardiovascular biology and opioid addiction.

Priority for these opportunities is given to students enrolled at the University of Vermont, however, students from other institutions underrepresented in medicine and science from inside and outside US institutions are encouraged to contact us.

  • Undergraduate students must in the second semester of their sophomore year or further to apply for a summer research project or a student research fellowship.
  • Medical Students
    OBGY-1007: OBGyn Research Elective (4th Year UVM Students Only).  Medical students seeking a brief introduction into women’s health research or begin a limited (less or equal to two months) research experience should complete the Interest Form found in the Course Catalog on Oasis and return to Sara Tourville.

Summer research projects.  Students will participate in a project that consists of a 7-week commitment and at least 40 hours per week.  The project will begin after May 30 and go until August.  They will work closely with a member of our department in an element of an ongoing project or, if appropriate, pursue an independent project. They will be expected to attend laboratory meetings, research seminars, and special lectures.  They will be expected to contribute towards the completion of an abstract that will be submitted to a local, regional, national, or international meeting. Applications for Summer Research Projects are due no later than January 15th prior to the summer the project is to be pursued. Applicants looking for support by LCOM and CVRI should coordinate this through the proper channels.

Student research fellowship.  Students will participate closely with a member of our department in pursuit of an independent project for research credit at least 15 hours per week for a minimum of 1 year.  Fellowships may begin in the spring or fall semester. Applications for a student research fellowship are due no later than July 15th for the start of the following fall (or no later than January 15th for the following spring and summer). 

Medical Students may be considered for a commitment of less than one year (minimum 2 months) for these opportunities.

Simulation Center Internship.  Students seeking a limited project in educational research in the simulation center should apply for a Simulation center internship at least 6 months before the requested start date with Dr. Cate Nicholas. 

If, after careful consideration of this information and review of the list of potential mentors, there are remaining questions, potential students may direct inquiries to Elizabeth Bonney, M.D., M.P.H.


Interested students are STRONGLY encouraged to click here to see the list of OB/GYN Faculty Interests. 


Applications will be reviewed by the committee in January or July and students should expect to hear if they are accepted by February 1st or August 1st, depending on the program. 

Priority will be given to Medical students and advanced or honors college students at UVM.  The selection criterion will include scholarly aptitude/ record, statement of purpose, and the availability of the mentors desired.  Applicants from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply. As part of the acceptance, students will receive the name and contact information for their mentor and will be expected to enroll to obtain research credits or meet rotation requirements, depending on the program.


Complete the application >>


Funding Opportunities >>


Clinical Trials

Clinical Research is conducted at The University of Vermont Medical Center, including the General Clinical Research Center (GCRC), and includes original investigations initiated by faculty as well as participation in national Phase III trials. Techniques used include the following: Color Doppler ultrasonography, DEXA scans, abdominal CT scans, euglycemic clamps, activity surveys, laparoscopic ovarian diathermy.

Clinical Trials - active recruiting and upcoming trials.