Dr. Choi and Lee Peyton in the lab at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

Discover the PREP program at Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

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Graduate training requires significant preparation during the undergraduate college experience. Some talented underrepresented students discover research late in their college careers and need more research experience to compete for top Ph.D. and M.D.-Ph.D. programs.

The Post-baccalaureate Research Education Program (PREP) encourages individuals from underrepresented groups or from disadvantaged backgrounds who hold a recent baccalaureate degree in a biomedically relevant area of study to pursue a research doctorate. The program focus is to strengthen the research skills and academic competitiveness of program participants in an effort to help meet the critical need for diverse investigators in basic and translational research.

Unique program opportunities:

  • An intense mentored research experience in basic science or translational research in the top laboratories at Mayo Clinic
  • Special seminars and selected graduate-level courses to expand each student's knowledge base so they can begin to apply basic science knowledge to biomedical research
  • Mentoring and guidance to assist with successful continuation into a research doctorate program to succeed in a basic or translational biomedical research career
  • Careful matching between student and mentor research and career interests
  • GRE study materials and tutoring
  • Salary and full eligibility for Mayo Clinic's benefit package, including low-cost, comprehensive medical coverage
  • The option to enroll in a limited number of Ph.D.-level graduate courses (up to four credits per quarter) at Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Dr. Schimmenti mentoring a PREP student in the lab at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

Find a mentor

The PREP program has 54 mentors in areas ranging from pediatrics to pharmacology to orthopedics. We carefully match students and mentor research and career interests to provide a dynamic mentored research experience in a supportive environment.

Learn more about our PREP mentors

From the program directorLuis Lujan, Ph.D., M.S.

Welcome to the PREP program! PREP aims to help train the next generation of leaders in biomedical sciences from underrepresented backgrounds. To achieve this goal, PREP provides an immersive research experience, graduate-level courses, and a curriculum that helps participants develop professional and leadership skills to help them successfully navigate their Ph.D. and future research careers.

The PREP curriculum includes workshops and seminars that focus on a variety of topics such as mentor selection, individual development plan preparation, time management, difficult conversations, presentation skills, grant writing, and more. PREP also offers a variety of useful and interesting seminars on topics such as imposter syndrome, emotional intelligence, health disparities, micro-aggressions, stereotype threat, racism, and many other topics. A “My Story” Summer series exposes students to scientific role models involved in academic research, industry, and government settings. Finally, PREP scholars are encouraged to participate in the organization of a biennial conference, Scientific Innovations Through Diverse Perspectives (SITDP), organized by students, for students.

PREP scholars are able to take graduate-level courses at the Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences that can be transferred to most Ph.D. programs. PREP scholars can also access GRE preparation tutors and mock interviews to help them prepare for Ph.D. applications and interviews. Of great importance is the near-peer mentoring from Ph.D. and M.D.-Ph.D. students, other post-baccalaureate scholars, medical students, and postdoctoral fellows that students within the program have access to. Students are also presented with opportunities to mentor other students and participate in community outreach activities.

We invite you to take a look around our website to learn more about our program.

Luis Lujan, Ph.D., M.S.
Associate Dean of Student Affairs, Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

2019 PREP students pose for a photo at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.