UCLA-HBCU Neuroscience Pathways Summer Program

The UCLA-HBCU Neuroscience Pathways program is an eight-week summer enrichment program for undergraduate students that attend historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the United States. The program is open to any undergraduate student that majors in a natural science and is in good standing an HBCU. The goals of the program are: 1) to increase the impact on students and faculty at both HBCU partner institutions and UCLA and, 2) to incentivize quality mentorship of the interns in our UCLA host labs. We will engage in active research and teaching partnerships that accompany students before and beyond the 8-week internship at UCLA.

A group of interested students, selected jointly by the HBCU partner institutions and UCLA will be invited to spend 8 weeks at UCLA doing research in an appropriate host laboratory. The research at UCLA will be commensurate with the experience at the HBCU partner institution. We will engage in active research and teaching partnerships that accompany students before and beyond the 8-week internship at UCLA of mentorship in the lab. Interns will be mentored and trained by the faculty members who run the respective labs. Additionally, we will host one “chaperone” HBCU faculty member per year to accompany the student for the first week of the internship- which is intended to foster both scientific collaboration and quality mentoring. To incentivize graduate studies at UCLA for HBCU interns, the BRI will offer a full 5-year stipend annually for at least one student, annually, who applies for and is accepted by the NSIDP. Furthermore, we will conduct outcome studies and publish them in a peer-reviewed journal, similar to other BRI outreach efforts. In short, we will take an innovative and holistic approach by providing not only a summer opportunity but by following the student before and after through online tools.

The requirements for acceptance into the program include:

  • A major in natural sciences

  • A minimum GPA of 3.0

  • A letter of intent to apply for the program

  • Academic transcript

  • Personal statement (limit to 1000 words) that describes your past, present or future leadership in and commitment to research and diversity in science

  • Summary of prior research, if any (limit to 1000 words)

  • Two letters of recommendation from science faculty

  • Paragraph (500 words or less) summarizing your interest in neuroscience or physiology

In a separate file, applicants need to rank in order of preference, the top three research training areas: Neuroendocrinology, Sex Differences, and Reproduction; Neural Repair; Neural Microcircuits; Neurobehavioral Genetics; Molecular and Cellular Neurobiology; or Molecular, Cellular and Integrative Physiology.

The program is run in conjunction with the BRISURE summer program: