The entire program gathers every Friday afternoon at 4:00 pm for “tea”; that is, food and drinks provided by each of the research groups in turn. This is a great time to socialize with faculty and other students and discuss common interests, both scientific and non-scientific.
During the summer, students, faculty, postdoctoral fellows, technicians, and administrative staff take a day off to swim, sunbathe, play volleyball and croquet, and overeat.
December is the month for holiday parties and our program takes such events seriously. A massive amount of food (mostly catered, partly pot luck) and drink is consumed while various labs put on skits, invent game shows, or screen homemade videos. The evening concludes with several hours of boisterous karaoke, where members of the program show off their singing ability (or lack thereof).
The Mighty Microbes are proud of having made the playoffs every year in the summer slow-pitch (no balls or strikes called) league. The season runs from May to August. Teams are mixed male and female and the atmosphere is relaxed and supportive. Talent is not a prerequisite for joining the team. Discrete beer drinking is not discouraged.
The Molecular Microbiology Program always sponsors a strong (in spirit) team at the annual Relays. Students, postdocs, summer trainees and faculty and staff all participate in the day's activities.