A Bridges to the Doctorate program between the two major Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSI) in California's Central Valley is proposed. This program will assist under-represented minority (URM) students from the California State University, Fresno with completing a Master's program in the biomedical sciences before continuing and completing their Ph.D. program at the University of California, Davis. This proposal will build on major research themes, activities and facilities including Research Infrastructure in Minority Institutions Program (RIMI) at Fresno State, the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the Clinical and Translational Science Center at UC Davis. Faculty members from the Colleges of Science and Mathematics at Fresno State and biomedical research focused graduate groups at UC Davis will create a highly interactive training program. The overall aim of the Fresno State Bridges to Doctorate program is to increase the number of URM graduate students entering and earning doctoral degrees in biomedical sciences. The program will recruit five graduate students each year with potential interests in pursuing research as a career and provide individually designed academic and research training plans to each. The major aims include: Refine professional skill sets through multiple opportunities to practice their oral and written skills and to network with other peers; actively participate and present at national/international research conferences to improve identification as a researcher and increase self-efficacy and science identity; Develop an understanding of and appreciation for their responsible conduct in research through supplemental responsible conduct in research (RCR) training course as well as for instructions on enhancing scientific reproducibility; and Provide summer research at research-intensive labs at UC Davis for the B2D students to integrate research experience that mirrors what they will experience in graduate school. The short- and long-range objectives are: To ensure that 90% of the B2D Scholars submit a graduate school application, with half the students being accepted into graduate Ph.D. programs in biomedical sciences in the first five years of the grant (short-range); Over the next decade we expect to maximize (80%) our B2D Scholars to join a Ph.D. program and pursue a career in biomedical research (long-range); and Over the next ten years, create a culture to expand and enhance the biomedical science curriculum developed by the B2D-Scholars program by the institutionalization of these practices (long-range). The Fresno-Davis B2D program will support the Scholars and lay the essential groundwork required to face the rigors of graduate school education in a highly competitive atmosphere. The Program Directors from both campuses have gathered a team of Faculty Mentors, an Advisory Committee and staff members, who are committed to the successful development of the program. All components of the Fresno-Davis Bridges program will be rigorously evaluated by an ongoing evaluation process to assess the success of the program.

Public Health Relevance

The Bridges to Doctorate program between the California State University, Fresno (Fresno State) and the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) will offer a range of curricular, research, and co-curricular activities for five Bridges graduate scholars each year to develop a pipeline for graduate students to successfully get accepted into Ph.D. programs in biomedical sciences. Fresno State is in the San Joaquin Valley (SJV) in California's Central Valley, one of the most rapidly growing culturally and ethnically diverse yet underserved areas in California. By working together with the faculty, members in the College of Science and Mathematics at Fresno State and faculty from UC Davis will create a highly interactive program to promote access to research careers to under-represented ethnic minorities and ease the transition of these students into Ph.D. programs.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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NIGMS Initial Review Group (TWD)
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Blatch, Sydella Anne
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California State University Fresno
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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