What is PREP at The University of New Mexico?

PREP is an NIH-funded post-baccalaureate training program, designed to enhance the ability of individuals in the biomedical sciences to gain entry to, and succeed in, nationally-recognized PhD programs. PREP is intended for individuals from under-represented groups in the sciences who have recently received a Bachelors degree. These individuals will either have relatively little laboratory experience, or will be changing research fields between their BS and PhD courses. 


In PREP, our Scholars are paid an annual salary of $27,200, plus health and dental benefits, for one year of support. During this year they are paired with a Faculty mentor from one of our departments, and engage full-time in cutting-edge research. This experience is essential to successful application in many of the top graduate schools in the country.

To enhance the Scholars’ competitiveness for graduate school, PREP also supports GRE preparation classes, and short training programs aimed at making the Scholars more familiar with the expectations and challenges of graduate school.

PREP will also cover tuition costs of classes which are required by the Scholar to become familiar with their current research.

Eligibility Information

  • Applicant must be a US Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Applicant must be a member of an underrepresented identity group, as defined by NIH. According to the NIH, individuals who have been found to be underrepresented in biomedically relevant research are: United States citizens who are African American, Hispanic American (including Puerto Rico), Native American, or natives of the U.S. Pacific Islands (e.g., Hawaii, Guam). 
  • And/or Individuals with disabilities (defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities) 
  • And/or in other underrepresented identity groups such as economically disadvantaged groups (for additional information see https://diversity.nih.gov/about-us/population-underrepresented). 
  • Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree acquired within the 36 months prior to the time of acceptance into the PREP program. 
  • Applicant must be demonstrably committed to pursuing a Ph.D.in a biomedical research field and carrying out research that will help to reduce health disparities. 
  • Have a tangible need to complete an additional year of training before applying to graduate school. This might arise  (for example)  from the applicant having little or no research laboratory experience, or from an applicant wishing to pursue a degree in a field distinct from that in which they received their bachelor’s training. 
  • Be willing to participate in a group training program that is designed to enhance their research education and career development. 
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 (out of 4.0). 

Get Started Here

PREP@UNM is the definitive program for preparing under-represented students for graduate school. If you are interested and eligible, you can apply right now.

How to Apply