Training program

Dean Tracy Johnson receives grant to launch undergraduate stem cell training program

Tracy Johnson, Dean of the Life Sciences Division and member of the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCLAreceived a $2.19 million grant from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to train students from underrepresented backgrounds in stem cell biology.

The state stem cell agency’s four-year commitment comes in the form of a Creating Opportunities Through Mentorship and Partnership in Stem Cell Science, or COMPASS, grant. With him, Johnson will found the UCLA COMPASS program, which will be open to sophomores and transfer students from two-year colleges.

Each UCLA student accepted into the COMPASS program will be paired with a faculty mentor from the UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center and participate in at least six terms of laboratory research, gaining valuable hands-on experience and earning credit for their degree. COMPASS Fellows will also take courses designed to equip them with the skills they need for a career in the stem cell field, present their research at conferences, and receive training in science communication and community outreach.

Applicants will initially be recruited from two UCLA programs: the Academic Advancement Program Summer Transfer Program and Pathways to Success, the latter of which was developed by Johnson. Pathways to Success is a four-year honors-level program designed to support undergraduate student endeavors in science, technology, engineering, and math programs, academic achievement, sense of belonging in science, and career goals.

“I am proud of UCLA’s efforts to create and maintain college and career readiness programs that help ensure the future success of undergraduate students who are committed to making positive changes in the world.” , said Johnson, holder of the Keith and Cecilia Terasaki Presidential Endowed. Chair in Life Sciences and Professor of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology.

Recruitment for the UCLA COMPASS program will begin this fall.

Read all press release on the UCLA COMPASS program.