Every child. Thinking critically. Solving problems.


The SARSEF Fair winners list is live!

See which projects won awards


Students Taking Advantage of Research

STAR Lab is a collaboration between SARSEF and the University of Arizona Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology that provides mentorship, consultation, research supplies, and lab space for high school students to complete their own authentic research projects.

Are you committed to in-depth long-term research?

Do you have 5-10 hours a week to dedicate to a research investigation with a mentor?

Are you 16 years of age?

If you answered yes to all these questions, please consider applying to the STAR Lab Program!

For the 2022-2023 academic year, the STAR Lab Program will be available in-person and remotely. Accepted student researchers interested in participating in-person will work at the STAR Lab in Biosciences West on the University of Arizona campus in Tucson. Alternatively, accepted student researchers may participate in a remote STAR Lab mentorship via Zoom. This means you can live anywhere in the state of Arizona and participate in STAR Lab!

All STAR Lab student researchers, whether in-person or remote, will participate in a weekly online lab meeting.

Please email Margaret Wilch, Director of Research, at with any questions or mentorship opportunities.

2022-2023 STAR Lab

Applications for the 2022-23 STAR Lab are now open!

Important Dates

  • September 6, 2022 – STAR Lab application closes
  • September 13, 2021 – we will notify applicants of their status and match each student with a mentor
  • September 19, 2021– early March, 2023 – STAR Lab Program runs
  • February 2023 – March 2023 – All STAR Lab participants will enter their research in the fair

Application Requirements

  • A recommendation from one nominating teacher who will support your participation in STAR Lab
  • A recommendation from a second teacher who will serve as an additional reference
  • A completed STAR Lab application
  • A 300-word written response to one of the application prompts emailed to Margaret Wilch at
  • An Unofficial Transcript emailed to Margaret Wilch at

Accepted STAR Lab research students will work with their assigned mentors for the duration of the program, meeting at least once a week to collaborate on the research process. This fabulous program will support you as you nourish and grow your inner scientist/engineer!