Life at CSHL

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory is located on the wooded north shore of Long Island, 35 miles east of Manhattan in New York City. The Laboratory offers many amenities, both cultural and recreational. There is a fitness room, tennis and volleyball courts, a private beach, kayaks and rowing sculls, the Stillman Outback hiking trail, and many quiet back roads for running or walking. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory employs more than 1000 people, including 51 research faculty, approximately 160 postdoctoral fellows, 100 Ph.D. students, 50 visiting Ph.D. students, and, in the summer, 20 Undergraduate Research Program students.

The Laboratory: The main campus of the Laboratory is located on 110 acres on the west shore of Cold Spring Harbor. It comprises more than 40 buildings are devoted to research, education, and residences. Research laboratories are housed in a range of buildings, from the newly built Hillside campus to the historic Jones Laboratory, dating from 1893 and the oldest laboratory in continuous use. Other labs are located in buildings named after their famous CSHL residents – McClintock, Delbrück, Sambrook, Hershey, Demerec. For dining, Blackford Hall offers three meals a day and the Hillside Cafe is open for breakfast and lunch. There are coffee bars in both Blackford and Hillside. Blackford Bar opens to the campus community in the evenings. The Mary D. Lindsay Day Care sits on the main campus and is available to all CSHL employees and students. Within five miles of the main campus is the Woodbury Genome Research Center, housing several of CSHL’s genomics laboratories and the next-generation sequencing facility. Also nearby are the 50-acre Banbury Center, 12-acre Uplands Farm Agricultural Field Station, and, in the village of Cold Spring Harbor, the Dolan DNA Learning Center

Graduate student housing: The Laboratory provides housing to first-year graduate students in on-campus housing. Single graduate students are offered single rooms in the recently renovated, 19th-century Knight and Cutting Houses located across the harbor from the Lab.


Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory offers many resources for recreational activities, including a fitness room; billiard, table-tennis, and foosball tables; tennis and volleyball courts; a private swimming beach; kayaks and rowing sculls; on-campus yoga classes; and many quiet back roads for running or walking. Many students participate in the Lab’s volleyball, soccer, and ultimate frisbee games during the summer, or basketball in winter.  In March, students are invited on the Lab’s ski trip to the Catskill Mountains.  In summer, students can apply for one of the Lab’s coveted gardening plots, which come with the added bonus of expert growing advice from CSHL’s grounds keepers.

Throughout the year, Blackford Bar is a popular place for members of the CSHL community to meet.  During the day, it’s a coffee bar – also serving an alternative lunch menu at mid-day – with espresso, lattes, and t.v.s for live-streaming talks from on-going CSHL meetings.  In the evening, it’s a pub serving a range of drinks.  Students, professors, postdocs, and technicians as well as CSHL administrators, grounds keepers, facilities workers, and the Lab president might all be found at Blackford on any given night.  It’s a great place to discuss new experiments just as well as the latest Mets game or your favorite Broadway musical.

Each year, the Laboratory hosts several Lab-wide picnics in the summer and indoor parties in the winter. As a part of CSHL’s Meetings & Courses program, students are invited for afternoon wine and cheese and Saturday evening cocktails, a unique opportunity to meet a number of prominent, visiting scientists from a range of fields.  Students are welcome to attend the public lectures and classical music performances sponsored by the Laboratory for the neighboring community. Friends of CSHL occasionally donate tickets for concerts or art exhibits to students.

New York City lies within 35 miles of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Frequent direct trains from Cold Spring Harbor, Syosset, or Huntington stations arrive at Penn Station in Manhattan in less than an hour, making all the possibilities of the City easily accessible. The beautiful North Fork of Long Island extends in the opposite direction, with its quiet towns, old farms, and vineyards.  A short drive south from Cold Spring Harbor brings you to Jones Beach and Fire Island, two extensive stretches of beautiful sand on the Atlantic Ocean with great opportunities for swimming or surfing. For more intense surf, Montauk lies at the eastern end of Long Island’s South Fork, about a two-hour drive from the Lab. The South Fork is also the site of the Hamptons, the quaint old summer communities of wealthy New Yorkers. The various Hampton villages offer a distinct variety of shopping and eating options for visitors.

Size and Characteristics Of Current Student Body

Size and Characteristics Of Current Student Body
(as of September 1, 2021)

Enrolled: 54
Male/Female: 26/28
US citizens and permanent residents: 24
% Underrepresented minority: 25
International Students: 30

Additional information

Class Photos