The goal of this proposal is to improve the diversity in biomedical research fields by increasing the number of underrepresented minority (URM) students who enter and successfully complete graduate programs at the doctoral level. The biomedical research community at UC Santa Cruz has played a leading role in broadening participation in pre-graduate and graduate research training programs through extensive programming and a variety of support services based on best practices. The NIH has funded the MARC and IMSD programs at UCSC for the past 30 years, and this past year the 100th student trained by these programs earned her PhD. Many UCSC faculty members have trained URM post-graduates in their labs as entry-level technicians, and many have received minority training supplements to their NIH R01 awards to support these postbacs. Our expert program staff works closely with faculty to ensure our URM students have the resources and support needed to confidently move toward earning their PhD degrees in a timely manner, and to enter productive careers in biomedical research. In addition, UCSC has a T32 Graduate Training Program that has been involved in training minority PhD students. Through these experiences working with students from under-represented and under-served populations, it is clear to us that these individuals do not lack in potential for outstanding success in research careers - only in preparation and confidence. We have identified a clear need for a PREP program at UCSC and are seeking funding to establish this important resource. UCSC PREP will serve students who have faced barriers in their academic progress, making up for gaps in preparation and providing individualized training that will prepare them for the rigors of graduate school. !
The biomedical research community at UC Santa Cruz has played a leading role in broadening participation in pre-graduate and graduate research training programs through extensive programming and a variety of support services based on best practices. With this PREP proposal, we will broaden training opportunities for recent graduates so that they will be able to gain admission to and complete a high quality PhD program. !