PiBBs recruits outstanding graduate students with diverse backgrounds and skills. They are trained to use collaborative, interdisciplinary approaches to address specific scientific questions of broad significance. The fellows’ commitment to interdisciplinary research is manifested through the completion of a rigorous interdisciplinary curriculum and participation in numerous formal and informal interdisciplinary events and activities.
PiBBs' Advisory Council includes faculty representation from the departments of Anthropology, Biology, Computer Science, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Mathematics and Statistics, and Physics. The council provides guidance in setting program policies and procedures, selects trainees from nominated students, and helps evaluate program effectiveness.
PiBBs utilizes a blog format to foster student discussion in its "Seminars" course. Students read one or two papers by each speaker prior to their talk and post comments, questions or musings to the PiBBsBlog. BioBlog was launched with the aim of communicating our passion and excitement for what we do in biology to others in the department, university and general public. As a weekly one-credit course, it gives undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to develop and hone their ability to write about science and to constructively critique the work of others.
PiBBs is a collaboration between the departments of Biology, Computer Science, Math and Statistics, Physics, Anthropology, Electrical and Computer Engineering at UNM, Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Santa Fe Institute. The impetus for PiBBs is the recognition that research on fundamental problems in biology and biomedical science will benefit from the input of new ideas, methodologies and investigative strategies from the physical sciences, engineering and mathematics. With few scientists trained to effectively work across the boundaries of their own disciplines, the program presents Ph.D. students with training opportunities that will provide them with the skills and knowledge to conduct cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research.