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BRIDGE Program

The Biomedical Research Immersion and Diversity For Graduate Education (BRIDGE) program is an 8 week, research-intensive program that combines a hands-on mentored research laboratory experience and a structured program of training modules, weekly program meetings and journal club sessions, and exciting field trips to different biomedical research facilities in Texas.  The BRIDGE program seeks to expose undergraduate students of diverse backgrounds including underrepresented minorities and students from economically disadvantaged and underserved backgrounds to graduate and professional programs available at the Texas A&M University (TAMU) College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM).

Unique features of the BRIDGE program include exposure of participants to both a robust biomedical sciences graduate program offering M.S and Ph.D. degrees and an outstanding Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) professional program.  The BRIDGE program will run concurrently with the CVM Veterinary Medical Student Research Training Program (VMSRTP) that engages first and second year veterinary students to a similar mentored research experience.  BRIDGE students will learn about the DVM professional program and interact with VMSRTP participants during weekly program meetings and field trips.

Trainees will conclude their 8 week research project by giving a short research presentation to the BRIDGE and VMSRTP participants during the last week of the program.  One to two outstanding BRIDGE participants will be provided an opportunity to travel to the Merial Veterinary Scholars Research Symposium.

Program Overview
  • The BRIDGE program is an intensive mentored research program from June 1, 2016 to August 1, 2016
  • BRIDGE program applicants should be enrolled at colleges and universities within the United States who are from an underrepresented or underserved or disadvantaged populations
  • Up to 6 BRIDGE program participants will be selected
  • BRIDGE participants will receive the following:
  • Possible funding for travel to present at a scientific conference for outstanding projects
    • Complementary on-site dorm housing from June 1, 2016 to August 1, 2016 that is within walking distance of the TAMU CVM campus
    • Complementary parking
    • A monthly stipend of $1,200 for 2 months
  • Possible funding for travel to present at a scientific conference for outstanding projects
Eligibility

Applicants must be:

  • Current junior or senior undergraduate students in good academic standing at a college or university in the Unites States
  • Committed to live in College Station, TX from June 1, 2016 to August 1, 2016* Note housing will be provided with acceptance to the program.
  • Committed to actively engaging in a research project for the duration of the 8-week program.
  • Belong to one of the following eligible underrepresented or underserved groups:
    • Individuals from an underrepresented or underserved ethnic or racial or other marginalized group
    • Individuals who are the first generation in their family to go to college
    • Individuals who for socio-economic, cultural, or educational reasons have not had access to high quality, cutting edge research experiences that are critical in deciding to pursue careers in biomedical research or veterinary medicine.
How to Apply

Applicants must complete the BRIDGE Program Application. Review of applications will begin April 21, 2016.

Download a list of all files that you are required to upload.

Field Trips

Keeling Center for Comparative Medicine and Research, MD Anderson Science Park (Bastrop, TX)

Students observe aspects of laboratory animal care (primates) and learn about the importance of animals in biomedical research. This visit includes tours of four primate colonies: rhesus, chimpanzee, owl monkey, and squirrel monkeys. After a lunch meeting with the veterinarians, students tour the pathology support laboratories.

Website: http://www.kccmr.org/

Center for Biodefense & Emerging Infectious Diseases, University of Texas Medical Branch (Galveston, TX)

Students meet and have lunch with several scientists conducting research on zoonotic pathogens. The students also get a "virtual" tour of a BSL-4 laboratory. Students have the opportunity to learn about animal disease research and its impact on humans and animals.

Website: http://www.utmb.edu/cbeid/

Comparative Cardiovascular Laboratory, Texas Heart Institute (Houston, TX)

Students visit with scientists and tour the animal facilities at THI, where translational research on ventricular assist devices and vascular stents is conducted. They also have an opportunity to view cardiovascular surgery from the observation deck of the operating suite.

Regenerative Medicine Research, Wafic Said Molecular Cardiology Research Lab & Center for Cell and Organ Biotechnology, Texas Heart Institute (Houston, TX)

The mission of the Wafic Said Cardiology Research lab is “to improve the treatments available for patients suffering from cardiovascular disease by combining basic research aimed at understanding the molecular mechanisms of heart disease with the discovery of innovative small molecule and cell-based therapeutics.” Students will be exposed to cutting edge research

"The Center for Cell and Organ Biotechnology is a new collaboration between the Texas Heart Institute and the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. Led by Dr. Doris A. Taylor, the Center draws from expertise at both institutions to position it as a world leader in adult stem cell research, organ transplantation, and personalized medicine. The Center includes scientists, engineers, physicians, veterinarians, and business managers from both organizations, other colleges affiliated with Texas A&M University, and affiliates in the Texas Medical Center."

Website: http://www.texasheart.org/Research/wafic.cfm

Texas A&M Institute for Preclinical Studies (TAMU)

Tour of TIPS, a state-of-the-art facility for GLP-compliant large animal preclinical studies. Their mission is to “fosters multi-disciplinary service, research, and education. The primary focus of TIPS is to develop research activities and provide core services in the areas of device development, preclinical studies under Good Laboratory Practices (GLP), and biomedical imaging. In addition, the educational mission of TIPS centers around the advanced training of graduate and professional students within relevant scientific and engineering disciplines, as well as support the needs of degree programs that train students and industry personnel on regulatory issues within biotechnology.”

Students observe surgery suites, animal housing, and advanced imaging technologies.

Website: http://tips.tamu.edu/