We have world-class researchers at the SOM, and as graduate students, you will have the opportunity to conduct research with them, learn from them, and develop your own interests. Want to know what we're working on?
The Biomedical Sciences Training Program (BSTP) is an umbrella program that offers a common entry point to most of our biomedical PhD programs. The program identifies accomplished, creative young scientists, to work with our more than 200 dynamic faculty researchers in a wide range of research areas. Our faculty value their interactive relationships with students and view mentoring young scientists as an important part of the mission of the School of Medicine.
The BSTP also seeks a student body that is vibrant and diverse. We welcome all applications, including those who come from groups that are under-represented in science and academia, including racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with physical disabilities, and individuals from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds. Our application allows you to tell us if you identify yourself with one of these categories, as designated by the National Institutes of Health. Please contact the program office if you need more information.
Join Our One-of-A-Kind Program
After completing the Fall semester in the BSTP, completing rotations and learning more about our PhD programs and research laboratories, you can enter any of the BSTP participating departments. Research areas and highlights are described on each program's website. Some programs have multiple tracks with core and specific coursework.
During the first semester, you will embark on lab rotations with research faculty, participate in coursework with your peers and then select the biomedical PhD program that fits you best. The program begins in July, and you're encouraged to arrive as early as possible so you can complete a research rotation before classes begin.
You'll complete at least three rotations, learning new techniques and getting to know the faculty. While you're doing rotations, you'll do everything a student in the lab would do, including attending journal clubs, research seminars and lab meetings. This allows you to evaluate the research and environment that best suits your interests. You’ll have an academic advisor who will help you set up rotations.
Most students take our course in cell and molecular biology (IBMS 453 & 455). This course offers an introduction to modern cell and molecular biology and provides a strong foundation for research in all of the PhD programs of the BSTP. Students with master’s degrees can place out of this course and take more advanced offerings. Students with strong quantitative skills in physics or math but limited biology exposure may be guided instead to cell physiology courses (including PHOL 432, PHOL 456).
In the middle of the first year you’ll choose your thesis advisors and join one of our 11 BSTP PhD programs. Your research interests are the primary factor in this choice.