Bridges to Baccalaureate Program

Program Description

The University of Massachusetts Boston (UMass Boston), in partnership with Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) and Roxbury Community College (RRC), announces the Bridges to Baccalaureate Program, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The objective of the Bridges Program is to advance the careers of community college students interested in pursuing a biomedical research career. The program has been designed to:

  • Provide comprehensive research training to Bridges participants while they receive financial compensation. Paid training components include:
  1. Research conducted under the direction of the UMass Boston and other Boston-area research faculty mentors.
  2. A four-week intensive workshop on principles, instrumentation and techniques used in biomedical research.
  3. Preparation of papers, oral presentations and posters, and 4) presentation of research findings at local and national conferences.
  • Provide academic preparation to transfer and excel at 4-year universities. Activities include facilitated study groups, a pre-calculus mathematics workshop, and tutoring.
  • Inform students about career choices and opportunities. Activities include a faculty seminar series.


Applicants must be United States citizens or permanent residents from underrepresented minority groups (Black African-Americans, Chicano/Latino Americans, Native Americans, and Natives of the U.S. Pacific Islands). Applicants should be enrolled at either BHCC or RCC. Bridges participants should have completed one year of chemistry and biology at the community college with a science GPA of 3.00 (however, exceptions to the GPA requirement can be made for students with special recommendations from science faculty from their community college).

Research Training

Participants in the bridges program receive practical training in modern laboratory techniques and then are placed in supportive UMass Boston and associated laboratory working environments where they establish peer/mentor relationships. Bridges participants are paired with junior and senior-year undergraduate students, minority graduate students or supportive staff research associates.

Benefits, Responsibilities, and Timetables

A paid 2-week research skills workshop begins in the first week of June followed by 8 to 10 weeks research training as a full-time (8 hours per day) UMass Boston employee during the summer. During the summer, Bridges participants attend a two-week workshop on biomedical laboratory methods, Mathematics Tutorial and Bridges Research Symposium. Financial support is available to attend nationwide conferences to present research findings. Selected applicants will be required to attend a two-hour pre-orientation meeting in May.

Application Process

Applications will be reviewed starting in the Fall Semester until all the positions are filled. You may download the Microsoft Word Bridges to the Baccalaureate Program application package that contains the Bridges Program Application Form, Letter of Recommendation and Statement of Purpose Form for either Bunker Hill Community College or Roxbury Community College.

For additional information about the Bridges to Baccalaureate Program contact:

Dr. Alexia Pollack, Academic Coordinator.
UMass Boston, 617.287.6600.

Dr. Katherine Gustafson, Academic Coordinator.
Bunker Hill Community College, 617.228.2181.

Dr. Andrella King, Academic Coordinator.
Roxbury Community College, 781.454.7082.

See Spotlight Feature on Umaru Barrie, Bunker Hill Community College, from his UMass Boston 2011 Summer Bridges Fellow Internship in Neurobiology

2012 Bridges to the Baccalaureate Data Blitz list of Bridges Fellows and research titles

2012 Bridges to the Baccalaureate Data Blitz photos