UCSF Neuroscience is committed to fostering an environment of diversity and inclusiveness in our program.

UCSF is committed to a diverse and inclusive graduate student population, which enhances the educational experience, the workplace, and the nature of scientific research. The Neuroscience Program is active with the following UCSF entities to achieve these goals.

  • The UCSF Office of Diversity and Outreach works to achieve the university’s mission of building a broadly diverse community, nurturing a culture that is welcoming and supportive, and engaging diverse ideas for the provision of culturally competent education, discovery, and patient care.

For Undergraduates and Prospective Graduate Students

  • Summer Research Training Program (SRTP): The SRTP strives to encourage undergraduate students to pursue research in the biomedical, biological, and behavioral sciences, and to make them more competitive candidates for admission to Ph.D. programs in these areas. This 9-week program, largely sponsored by the National Institute for Mental Health (NIMH), is open to students in their sophomore year and above, and provides an individualized laboratory research experience, co-curricular workshops, and social activities.
  • University of California Leadership Excellence through Advanced Degrees (UC LEADS): UC LEADS is a two-year program for UC juniors majoring in the fields of science, engineering, or mathematics who have a strong commitment to pursue a PhD in one of these fields. LEADS scholars conduct research with UCSF faculty, participate in academic enrichment programs, and attend an annual symposium with UC LEADS scholars from other UC institutions. The program also includes summer research experiences, travel to other UC campuses and professional and scientific society meetings.
  • Off-Campus Recruiting: Meet with Neuroscience and other UCSF faculty, students and administrators at events such as ABRCMS and SACNAS meetings, annual Society for Neuroscience meetings, research talks on your home campus and other national conferences and scientific meetings.
  • Diversity Network Initiative: Launched in 2018, the Diversity Network Initiative aims to connect current and prospective PhD students from similar backgrounds (e.g., veteran status, first-gen, gender identity, race/ethnicity, LGBTQ+ identity, disability status, and more) to build a professional network and community, share experiences, and provide insight into diversity and inclusion at UCSF. The Neuroscience Program invites all applicants who have been invited for interviews to participate in the Program. Regardless of whether applicants choose to attend UCSF or not, this opportunity will expand applicants’ professional networks and enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion within STEM and higher education.  
    This program was developed by Tetrad PhD Candidate, Roberto Efraín Díaz, and Assistant Dean for Diversity and Learner Success, Dr. D'Anne Duncan. 
  • Diversity and Allyship Breakfast: We encourage all applicants to register for the Diversity and Allyship Breakfast, co-hosted by the Graduate Division Dean's Office and the UCSF SACNAS Chapter, during the interview visit. Graduate students and the diversity dean serve as panelists to discuss the climate at UCSF, and campus DEI resources, such as the IMSD program, are highlighted.  
    This breakfast was created by Tetrad alum Joselyn Del Cid and Biomedical Sciences alum Raul Torres, and further developed by Biomedical Sciences alum Melissa Spear, Biomedical Sciences PhD Candidate Ramiro Patiño, Tetrad PhD Candidate Roberto Efraín Díaz, and Assistant Dean for Diversity and Learner Success, Dr. D'Anne Duncan. 
  • Brain Camp @ UCSF: Founded in 2016, Brain Camp is a free, immersive, week-long experience for underrepresented and underserved Bay Area high school students led by UCSF medical students and faculty. The Camp features many hands-on activities and explores neuroscience, neuroanatomy, and behavioral science topics. The Neuroscience Graduate Program is a proud sponsor of Brain Camp and is lead by three of our very own Neuroscience students, Alison Comrie, Kate McCluskey, and Sandon Griffin.

For Current Graduate Students

  • The National Institute for General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD): Funded by the National institute for General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) Initiative for Maximizing Student Diversity (IMSD), this program is designed to improve the academic and research competitiveness of underrepresented minority students and facilitate their progress toward careers in biomedical research. Eligible students are nominated for this fellowship by their department upon their acceptance for graduate study, and awardees are provided with financial support for five years and co-curricular academic experiences that broaden their perspectives and marketable skills.