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Office of Graduate Education Stanford Biosciences Office of Graduate Education

ADVANCE Undergraduate Institute

The ADVANCE Undergraduate Institute (AUI) is a three-day intensive institute sponsored by Stanford Biosciences and the Stanford Black Bioscience Organization. The AUI is designed to introduce diverse sophomores and juniors to the Stanford University campus and provide guidance on the graduate school admissions process. After completing the three-day institute, students have access to the AUI network and can engage with previous participants who are currently pursuing and/or enrolled in PhD and/or MD-PhD programs. Eligible AUI applicants should be interested in pursuing a doctorate in the biosciences.

*AUI participants receive overnight accommodations, meals, travel to and from Stanford, and free access to the full schedule of events.


  • Application opens on October 29, 2020
  • Apply here


  • Application closes on January 20, 2021

Eligibility and Application Requirements:

  • Current sophomore or junior at a 4-year university, non-graduating seniors are also welcomed to apply
  • All students are encouraged to apply, especially African, Black and Caribbean students
  • Demonstrated interest in pursuing a PhD in the biosciences (i.e. prior scientific research experience or intent to participate in research in the upcoming academic year)
  • Completed application, submitted by the January deadline
  • Unofficial transcript
  • One (1) letter of recommendation


  • Application closes on January 20, 2021 at 11:59pm PST
  • Selected participants notified mid-February; selected participants will have 48 hours to accept or decline their offer
  • ADVANCE Undergraduate Institute program dates are April 7 to April 10, 2021
  • * As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the health and safety of every AUI scholar is our upmost priority. In keeping with Stanford’s social distancing policy, AUI 2021 will be offered as a 100% virtual institute.

Recommendation Letters:

  • Recommendation letters from someone familiar with your previous research and/or graduate level research potential (PIs, research program directors, etc.) are strongly encouraged.
  • Recommendation letters should touch upon your capacity and motivation to conduct research at the graduate level.

AUI 2021 & Stanford Summer Research Program (SSRP) – Two programs, one application

Applicants who wish to be considered for both ADVANCE Undergraduate Institute (AUI) and the Stanford Summer Research Program (SSRP) can apply to both programs using one online application portal. Being selected to participate in AUI will not influence the selection process for students who also applied to SSRP (or vice versa).

Questions? Email Dr. Jennifer R. Cohen at and include “AUI” in the subject line.