MARC at Temple University Building on the 10-year success of ?TU MARC U* STAR Program,? Temple University (TU) seeks funding to advance its mission to train undergraduate students of racial/ethnic and disadvantaged groups that are traditionally underrepresented (UR) in biomedical sciences, and prepare them for graduate school PhD or MD/PhD programs. TU provides access to a relatively large undergraduate population of UR students consistently ranking in the top programs in the nation in undergraduate diversity. In the College of Science and Technology (CST), black and Hispanic students comprise 24% of the total. Many TU undergraduate students are first-generation college students and many UR students attended public schools in the Philadelphia area. Underprepared students have few college-level study skills, and often have part- or full-time jobs. TU has the potential to increase the pool of students who would not otherwise consider or be prepared for PhD programs. Our initial MARC program was established at Temple University in 2009 with funding for the first cohort of 8 rising juniors. We successfully oriented students to research and a built cohort, students were assigned to faculty mentors matched with their research interests. Mentors from TU included faculty in the College of Science and Technology, research centers at Lewis Katz School of Medicine (LKSOM), College of Engineering (Bioengineering Department) and College of Public Health. Over the past 10 years of two funding cycles (2009- 2019), our MARC program graduates successfully enrolled in or graduated from PhD, MD/PhD or enrolled in PREP programs for PhD or MD/PhD or Master?s program with goal of entering a PhD program. Our overall success rate of MARC graduates entering graduate programs in biomedical sciences within 3 years of graduation is 85%. In this application, we aim to extend and expand the MARC program by addressing the shortfall of college students in biomedical sciences and urgent need to increase the diversity of biomedical and behavioral research. We have and will continue to address the need to ensure more UR undergraduates pursue PhD or research-focused MD/PhD programs. The successful features of the past program will be integrated with new components with the addition of the community engagement in research training. The goal is to build on the research support at Temple University from the CST Research for Undergraduate Program (URP), LKSOM U54 Cancer Health Disparity Research and Education program (PI: Dr. Ma) and T32 programs, as well as continue student research support through graduation and transition into graduate PhD or MD/PhD programs. We will enroll 16 promising students into our MARC program for two years of research support. Faculty mentors across multi-disciplines and colleges agreed to provide full-time, hands-on research training and mentorship. Trainee measurable outcomes will be GPA, number of research presentations and co-authored publications and acceptance to competitive PhD or MD/PhD programs through graduation and participation in the biomedical workforce as a result of improved research, communication and social skills/emotional intelligence.

Public Health Relevance

of the MARC Program at Temple University is related to its significant impact on preparing underrepresented and disadvantaged students to successfully complete the undergraduate degree and pursue a PhD or MD/PhD in biomedical sciences, ultimately increasing the diversity of PhD-level scientists that bring diverse perspectives to investigate health issues to reduce health disparities. The MARC program is a university-wide collaboration between College of Science and Technology and Research Centers at Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University, which will enhance mentored-research projects and science- based activities. As a result, MARC scholars who are more aware of and engaged in health disparities research in underserved minority communities, will be more likely to pursue a long-term career in the field of biomedical sciences.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
MARC Undergraduate NRSA Institutional Grants (T34)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Training and Workforce Development Subcommittee - D (TWD)
Program Officer
Blatch, Sydella Anne
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Temple University
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
Zip Code