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CiHED Programs

Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC) Program

The Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC) program at UC San Diego was established in 2023 and is funded by the National Institutes of Health General Medical Sciences. MARC's mission is to motivate, train and mentor students from disadvantaged social and economic backgrounds and traditionally underrepresented ​in the sciences as well as students with disabilities,​​​ to become future scientists. The final objective of MARC is that participants enroll in a national Ph.D. program.

MARC replaces the ​former Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD) program, originally founded in 2008.

Pathways to Careers in Health Sciences

The Pathways to Careers in Health Sciences program is directed at students from disadvantaged social and economic backgrounds, students from ethnic groups that are underrepresented in science/medicine, and students with disabilities who want to continue to medical school. The main objective of this program is to engage these students in active research projects, which is a key component for a successful medical school application. In addition, participants are provided with opportunities for medically related experiences such as physician shadowing and internships. Participants are assisted in the preparation of strong graduate school applications. Students initially participate in a basic training laboratory (BMTL) directed at teaching the necessary basic skills to participate successfully in a research project. The BMTL is followed by joining a research group to get involved in a project under the mentorship of an internationally recognized investigator.

Interested participants, please contact Barbara Rho (

Latin American-UC San Diego Science Connect

Latin America-UC San Diego Science Connect is an exchange program that aims to foster scientific collaborations by matching MS and PhD students from Latin and South America with faculty sponsors at UC San Diego for 3-month (minimum) research experiences. Science Connect participants enjoy the unique opportunity to live, work, and share in the cultural diversity of a new country while, in turn, sharing their own knowledge and experiences with their hosts.

Interested participants, please contact Barbara Rho (