M.S. to Ph.D. Program

The CSULB RISE M.S. to Ph.D. Program seeks to increase the capacity of students underrepresented in the biomedical sciences to complete Ph.D. degrees in these fields. The program activities are designed to strengthen students' academic preparation, research training, and professional skills. MS students will complete a two-year Master's degree program that culminates in the defense of a Master's research thesis. In addition, RISE M.S. to Ph.D. students will present their work at professional conferences, be active in the RISE Learning Community, and take the Biomedical Colloquium to increase skills in reading primary literature and scientific writing. Completing a research degree in two years will require discipline and commitment, and will produce students ready to tackle biomedical Ph.D. programs at research-intensive universities.

RISE M.S. to Ph.D. students receive partial tuition support and can earn wages while working in faculty-directed research for up to 20 hours a week during the academic year and up to 40 hours a week when classes are not in session. The program provides support for some research supplies and travel to present research results at professional conferences.

Timeline

M.S. Fellows Year One

RISE funding commences on June 1 of 1st year.

Summer

  • Research in Faculty Labs
  • RISE Learning Community
  • Individual Development Plan
  • RCR Training
  • Start Preparing Ph.D. Application Packages
  • Prepare for and take GRE

Fall

  • Courses
  • Research in Faculty Labs
  • M.S. to Ph.D. Learning Community

Spring

  • Courses
  • Research in Faculty Labs
  • M.S. to Ph.D. Learning Community
  • Present Thesis Proposal to Thesis Committee
  • Biomedical Colloquium (offered every other Spring)

M.S. Fellows Year Two

RISE funding continues until May 31 of 2nd year.

Summer

  • Research in Faculty Labs
  • RISE Learning Community
  • Edit & Perfect Application Package
  • Prepare for and take GRE

Fall

  • Courses
  • Research in Faculty Labs
  • M.S. to Ph.D. Learning Community
  • Apply to Ph.D. Programs
  • Teaching Assistant (one semester required)

Spring

  • Courses
  • Write and Defend M.S. Thesis
  • M.S. to Ph.D. Learning Community
  • Ph.D. Program Interviews

Eligible Degree Programs

Currently, two CSULB Departments, Chemistry and Biochemistry and Biological Sciences are participating in the RISE M.S. to Ph.D. program. More information about the specific programs can be found on their web pages, linked in the following table.

Master's Programs Advisor/Coordinator Application Deadline Links
Biology (M.S.) Advisor: Kevin Sinchak
562-985-8649
Kevin.Sinchak@csulb.edu

Coordinator: Christina Schneider
562-985-7928
Christina.Schneider@csulb.edu
March 15
Microbiology (M.S.) Advisor: Kevin Sinchak
562-985-8649
Kevin.Sinchak@csulb.edu

Coordinator: Christina Schneider
562-985-7928
Christina.Schneider@csulb.edu
March 15
Chemistry (M.S.) Michael Schramm
562-985-1866
Michael.Schramm@csulb.edu
April 1*
Biochemistry (M.S.) Paul Weers
562-985-4948
Paul.Weers@csulb.edu
April 1*

*Chemistry and Biochemistry application deadlines are June 1, but RISE acceptance is dependent on acceptance by the Department.


Potential Research Mentors

Applicants should identify possible research mentors as soon as possible after admission to their degree program.

Application

Applications for the CSULB M.S.-to-Ph.D. program are due at 5:00pm, April 1, 2019.

Apply to RISE M.S.-to-Ph.D.

Award decisions are be made in early May and M.S. to Ph.D. students may begin laboratory research in June.

To be eligible for the RISE M.S.-to-Ph.D. program, you must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national, or legal permanent U.S. resident.

Important: You must also apply to AND be accepted to the degree program you wish to pursue (Department of Biological Sciences OR Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry) AND California State University, Long Beach to be considered for funded support. See: Graduate Programs Admission Eligibility

A completed application requires four components. If you have any questions regarding the application components, please send your questions to RISE.MS2PhD@csulb.edu.

1. Primary Application Form

Please fill out the Primary Application Form, which contains the following sections: Personal Information, Letters of Recommendation, Authorization, and Acknowledgement.

To fill out the Personal Information section, you will need your contact information, your academic history including cumulative and major GPA, as well as the highest level of education attained by your parents.

To fill out the Letters of Recommendation section, you will need the names, institutions and email addresses for three people who will write letters of support for you. If you have participated in research, one letter should be from your research mentor. If you have worked in the biomedical industry, one letter should be from your research supervisor. These letters should address your ability to succeed (intellectual ability, determination, maturity, etc.) in an intensive two-year M.S.-to-Ph.D. program that leads to entrance into a Ph.D. program. Be sure to click the waiver even if you do not agree to waive your access to Letters of Recommendation. Recommenders must send letters as attachments directly to RISE.MS2PhD@csulb.edu

The Authorization section will first ask if you are a CSULB student. If yes, you will be asked if you authorize the RISE program to review your academic records.

In the Acknowledgement section, you will acknowledge that you have filled out the application correctly and to the best of your knowledge.

2. Confidential Data Form

The Confidential Data Form asks for confidential information, and you can Decline to State for all questions EXCEPT: whether you and your family qualify under the 2019 poverty level as defined by Health and Human Services (HHS), and if you are eligible for financial aid.

Please read 2019 Poverty Guidelines before starting the Confidential Data Form. If you are eligible to receive financial aid, you will need to send a copy of your FAFSA score or Financial Aid Award Letter (whether or not you have unmet need) to Yvette.Castano@csulb.edu in order to complete your application.

You will be emailed a link to the Confidential Data Form after you complete the Primary Application Form.

3. Supporting Documents

Please send your Personal Statement and Curriculum Vitae in one combined PDF file to RISE.MS2PhD@csulb.edu.

Personal Statement: Tailor your Personal Statement to the RISE M.S.-to-Ph.D. Program. The RISE M.S.-to-Ph.D. program is an intensive two-year program that provides financial support allowing participants to complete a research project while preparing for admission into Ph.D. programs. Introduce yourself in 600 words or less. We are particularly interested in learning why you are motivated to obtain a Ph.D. in the biomedical sciences and what your career research interests are. Describe your ability to persevere and commitment towards completing the RISE M.S.-to-Ph.D. program. Describe research experiences you have had -- what research questions you pursued, what you did and what your results meant. Explain any discrepancy between your grades in academic coursework (and/or GRE scores) and your talents and potential.

Curriculum Vitae: Please provide an up-to-date curriculum vitae. Please include previous research support if you have received it.

4. Department and University Applications

Please apply to the graduate programs for the Department of Biological Sciences by March 15 or to the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department by April 1. These applications require a separate application to the University. Transcripts and GRE scores are included in the Department applications and will be accessible to the RISE program. Thus, you do not need to send transcripts and GRE scores separately to the RISE program.

Note: No particular GRE score is required for admission into the M.S.-to-Ph.D. RISE program (but may be required by the Department). The GRE score serves as a general indicator of your interest in pursuing a Ph.D. If unable to take the GRE prior to the application deadline, please arrange to take the exam at the earliest available date. Please see GRE Test Centers and Dates to sign up for the GRE.

Contact RISE

M.S. to Ph.D. Program

Please include your student ID number (if known) in all email correspondence.