We in the McBride Lab are committed to cultivating a welcoming, supportive lab environment where people of all backgrounds can thrive. However, we recognize that racism and other forms of bias continue to marginalize or altogether exclude certain groups from academic communities. In many cases such bias is subconscious but nevertheless insidious and harmful. We are therefore committed to raise our own awareness and work actively to rectify inequities in our community and the broader academic field.
One major barrier may be limited access to information about research opportunities, funding, and other available support. Below is a non-comprehensive list of resources for aspiring scientists from under-represented groups (including racial minorities, low-income/first-generation college students, LGBTQ+ individuals, and others) at diverse career stages. This list also includes opportunities for allies to get involved, volunteer, and raise awareness. Members of our lab have participated in many of these programs and found them helpful/rewarding.
Programs for pre-university students (and interested scientists)
- Skype a Scientist: Connect scientists with teachers & classrooms across the globe to help make science more accessible
- Letters to a Pre-Scientist: Connect students with scientist pen pals
- Princeton University’s Laboratory Learning Program: Research opportunities at Princeton for high school students (not explicitly for BIPOC/URM students, but still a way to get into a lab early)
- Princeton University Preparatory Program (PUPP): Multi-year college preparatory program for low-income students at certain NJ high schools
Undergraduate research opportunities @ Princeton
- PNI summer research program: Summer research experience for undergraduates in Neuroscience. URMs strongly encouraged to apply.
- REU for computational biology (beginning summer 2021): Summer research experience in computation biology for formerly incarcerated students
Applying to graduate school
- Princeton EEB Scholars Program: Multi-day visit/workshop designed to give URM prospective students the tools they need to confidently apply to graduate programs (at Princeton or elsewhere)
- EEB Mentor Match: Connects prospective students with support to apply for fellowships and to graduate programs in EEB
- Cornell University Diversity Preview Weekend: Similar to Princeton EEB Scholars, with goal of increasing access to graduate school in fields of EEB, entomology, and plant sciences. Targeted to URM students a year before applying to grad school.
- Stanford Biology Preview Weekend: Similar to Princeton EEB Scholars Program but at Stanford
- More Preview Weekends: From Cientifico Latino, a database of schools that offer preview weekends in STEM fields (not explicitly EEB or Neuro focused)
- General advice on applying to grad school in EEB: O’Connor lab’s advice, Dynamic Ecology’s advice, Andrew Hendry’s advice, Joan Strassman’s advice, Steve Phelps’ advice
Princeton institutional support for equity and inclusion
- Princeton Office of Diversity and Inclusion: Primarily for undergraduates, connects to resources from the Carl Fields Center, Women’s Center, and LGBT Center.
- Princeton Graduate School diversity and inclusion: Primarily for grad students, programs to promote diversity and inclusion at all levels from applying to Princeton to 1st year support to workshops/events to promote access, diversity, and inclusion
- Princeton Hidden Minority Council: Advocates for first generation and low income students
- Scholars Institute Fellows Program: Supporting 1st generation/lower-income students. Emphasis on mentorship ties between undergrads, grads, and faculty/staff
Other outreach and professional development resources
- Prison Teaching Initiative: Provides high-quality post-secondary education to incarcerated students. Depends on volunteers
- Project Biodiversify: Provides methods and material to help university educators diversify examples of biologists in their lectures
- NextProf : Workshop designed to help advanced PhD students and postdocs with a demonstrated commitment to diversity prepare for/apply to faculty positions in academia.
Diversity advocacy groups
- SACNAS: Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science. Chapters at many universities; annual conference with the explicit goal of providing inclusive environment for cutting edge research and professional development
- oSTEM: Out in STEM, LGBTQ+ advocacy
- Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS). Students present research with opportunities for professional development. Many grad schools recruit at this event (including Princeton).
- ESA SEEDS: Initiative by the Ecological Society of America offering opportunities for URMs (funded research opportunities, funding to attend ESA meeting, mentorship…)
- Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Graduate Scholarships Programs
- Ford Foundation Fellowships (for graduate students and postdocs)
- HHMI Hanna H. Gray Fellowships (for postdocs)
- AAUW (for women)
- UGSP Scholarship (for undergrads)
- Princeton Pre-doctoral Fellowship Initiative: Princeton fellowship providing 1 year of funding for extra, individualized training before entering a doctoral program, along with an offer of admission the following year. Targeted at under-represented groups.
- Compilation of fellowships on Harvard Life Sciences website
- Compilation of fellowships by Científico Latino