The MD Anderson Cancer Center UPWARDS Research Training Program provides hands-on, laboratory based research experience to help foster sustained interest in cancer research for young scientists. Our comprehensive UPWARDS Training Program focuses on major barriers deterring and preventing many students from pursuing and succeeding in graduate programs and in cancer research careers.
In addition to the academic year-long program, we also have a summer program for high school and undergraduates students. Read more information on the summer program.
2023-2024 UPWARDS Academic Year Training Program
The 2023-2024 Academic Year Program will run from September 4, 2023 through May 31, 2024.
Information on applying to the 2024-2025 program will be released in the spring. Please monitor our website for updates.
The UPWARDS program was a unique experience where I was able to bridge the gap between knowledge acquired in the classroom with real hands-on experience within the laboratory of one of the most prestigious cancer centers in the world. Through the program, I was able to develop and hone a wide range of skills, such as critical thinking, problem-solving, and communicating complex scientific knowledge to others.
UPWARDS Alumnus, 2022-2023
Program Details & Eligibility
The MD Anderson UPWARDS Academic Year Research Training Program will cultivate undergraduate scientists with the goal of increasing participation in biomedical graduate programs and in the cancer research workforce by supporting 10 undergraduate trainees per year. The program offers stipends, fringe benefits, and provide a modest travel allowance if invited to present at a conference or symposium. UPWARDS Undergraduate Academic Year Program trainees will be appointed for one year with competitive renewal option for up to two years. Renewals will be dependent upon successful academic and research progress, participation in activities related to the UPWARDS Undergraduate Academic Year Training Program (e.g., an annual presentation, journal club meetings) and competition with new applicants.
Accepted students will take part in a paid part-time year-long research experience at MD Anderson. Through this experience, students will be paired with a faculty member working in his /her lab gaining hands-on research experience, participate in didactic coursework and training, and receive mentoring to guide the trainee in their future academic and professional pursuits.
All trainees accepted into the UPWARDS undergraduate academic year research experience will be required to participate in two outreach activities during the course of the program. The leadership team will work with each trainee to identify opportunities around their school and lab schedules. Additional details will be provided upon acceptance into the program.
All applicants must be an undergraduate who identifies as economically disadvantaged, educationally disadvantaged, with disabilities, or a first-generation student.
How To Apply
Applications are not being accepted at this time. Please monitor our website for updates.
Program Leadership & Contact Information
Khandan Keyomarsi, Ph.D. (left in photo)
UPWARDS Program Director
Stephanie S. Watowich, Ph.D. (right in photo)
UPWARDS Program Director
Questions? Contact us!
Please reach out to the Administrative Program Manager, Valoree Solis, M.B.A. (VDSolis@mdanderson.org), with any questions that you may have regarding the program and/or the application process.