To improve our overall academic environment, the MBRS program was initiated in 1985 to prepare UPRC students to become scientists. As part of this long term goal, we are proposing in this application to improve and expand our RISE program by concentrating on student skill development. These changes will be assessed and each component monitored by an external evaluator working with the activity coordinators, the program director, and the RISE Advisory Committee. The RISE program addresses three needs, 1-lack of awareness, 2-lack of research experience, and 3-limited English language skills, by offering three components: visiting scientists, hands-on research, and summer research. All components address the needs. Visiting scientists present seminars and workshops in English to improve student awareness of new techniques and discoveries, of new science careers, and to serve as role models. Hands-on faculty mentors offer semester long research experiences and workshops. Both activities are tailored to motivate and build the skills needed to be scientists. This component has on-campus and on-island mentors working with students during their first two years to counsel, to maintain their interests and focus their goals. During this two year period students will work with five different mentors learning the bases of experimental design and the associated techniques in molecular biology, cell biology, genetics, histology, etc. Finally, summer research allows sophomores, juniors and seniors to experience graduate school life by working for ten weeks with off-island scientists at research intensive institutions. Each component enables students and faculty to develop basic research skills by interacting with a different group of experts: 1) on-campus faculty mentors, 2) on-island research mentors located at selected affiliated institutions, 3) visiting scientists from off-island universities, and 4) scientists located in collaborating institutions. Each component challenges the students as they develop utilizing the appropriate environment and level of expertise to produce UPRC alumni who will be biomedical research scientists. Currently 32% of all MBRS graduates (n=226) are pursuing either a Ph.D. (n=46, %=20) or an M.S. degree (n=28, %=12).

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Education Projects (R25)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Minority Programs Review Committee (MPRC)
Program Officer
Toliver, Adolphus
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
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Fiscal Year
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University of PR Cayey University Coll
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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