Thank you for your interest in the Boston University School of Medicine Post-baccalaureate Research Education Program (BU PREP).

BU PREP is a year-long preparatory program for recent bachelor’s degree recipients seeking entry into competitive PhD training programs. BU PREP is designed to foster mentoring relationships that will enhance personal and scientific development for members of historically underrepresented groups in the biomedical sciences. BU PREP scholars will be paired with BUSM’s outstanding faculty, have access to state-of-the-art research facilities, and work closely with an advising team to create an individualized career plan directed toward doctoral graduate school entry and success. BU PREP is supported by a grant from NIH/NIGMS R25 GM125511.

*The tentative start date for BU PREP is June 6, 2022.

Program Details

  • Four research assistantships are available on an annual basis for a period of one year
  • An annual stipend
  • A mentored research experience
  • A curriculum that includes seminars, workshops, and courses
  • Extensive advising on career choices and applying to graduate school
  • The option to enroll in PhD-level graduate courses at Boston University School of Medicine

Application Instructions

  • The BU PREP program is intended for students with a strong desire to pursue research careers at the PhD level. We are particularly interested in motivated and talented students from traditionally underrepresented groups and a diversity of backgrounds.
  • Applicants must be recent graduates and must be eligible to work in the United States.
  • To participate in the BU PREP:
    • You must be a US citizen or permanent resident
    • You must have a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field prior to the start of the program, but no more than 3 years prior to applying to the program
    • You must not be concurrently enrolled in a degree program
    • You must not have previously completed a graduate or professional degree program
    • You must apply to PhD programs for admission following successful completion of the program


Evaluation of applications will be based on a holistic review of the materials listed below and completed applications are evaluated on a rolling basis.  Early submission is highly encouraged.

An outline of the required materials is listed below. Please complete the application and upload supporting documents via Google Forms or click “submit application” and email supporting documents to BUPREP@bu.edu.

Application Checklist

  1. Biographical information
  2. Short essay 1: please explain factors and experiences in your life and educational background that show that you will add diversity to a class, campus, lab, university community and/or that you may have overcome adversity to become a college graduate pursuing an advanced degree. [500-word limit]
  3. Copy of your official (if available) or unofficial transcript for all colleges in which you have been enrolled as a degree candidate [email attachment or application upload]
  4. Short essay 2: please discuss any academic successes, challenges, or experiences that will help the committee put your undergraduate experience into perspective. [500-word limit]
  5. Copy of your CV or resume [email attachment or application upload]
  6. Personal statements:
    1. Please specify your academic interests, any research experience, and why the BU PREP program is a good fit for your research training and future career goals. [1200-word limit]
    2. Please describe how you anticipate BU PREP will prepare you for your short- and long-term professional goals. [200-word limit]
  7. Contact information for two recommenders who will submit a letter of recommendation on your behalf [name, title, institution, email, phone number] We do not send automated emails to your recommenders, please coordinate directly with your recommenders.

This is a highly selective program and finalists will be invited to interview with the program directors.


Tentative start date: June 6, 2022. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, part of the PREP program may be remote.

The application opens in November 2021.  Admissions are rolling and will continue until all spots are filled.  Full consideration will be given to applications submitted by April 15, 2022. Although we may evaluate any application received after this date, it is to your advantage to submit your application by the deadline.

How To Apply

To apply to BU PREP, please complete the online application. Apply now!

Any questions and supporting documents may be sent to buprep@bu.edu.