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University of California, Riverside gains $2.9 million dollars from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine for the Research Training and Mentorship Program Inspire Diverse Undergraduates toward Regenerative Medicine Careers, otherwise known as RAMP. The funding will be focused on undergraduate training in regenerative medicine; therefore, the program will combine new technology and treatments with the Inland Empire. 

The grant will be used over the next 5 years to help support and attract undergraduate students to regenerative medicine career pathways. By funding this program, the hope is to develop new treatments for tissue and cell damage, including neurons and other brain cells. The research carried out by accepted undergraduates and faculty will include engineering tissue development and uncovering the natural regenerative biological processes. 

RAMP applications have closed for the 2023 cycle; however, first and second year students from the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences and Bourn’s College of Engineering with stem cell related majors are encouraged to apply in the future spring quarters. Applications are usually due in the beginning of April and the program will be a 3 year commitment. Although the commitment is rather large, the experience and support gained is greatly beneficial. 

Only 18 students will be accepted per cycle and will be divided into 3 groups of 6 students each. These students will receive up to $9,000 dollars per year to pay for their tuition and a $2,000 dollar stipend per quarter to commit to the research project full time, meaning summer training and part time participation during the academic year. The financial support of the program is generous, but in turn the undergraduates will be put through rigorous lab training and be contributing to presentations and papers. It is a great opportunity to gain research experience needed to host labs and work in labs. Undergraduates will also be able to develop their rhetorical skills by attending conferences and traveling for presentations. There are often opportunities for workshops to further enhance personal development, creating a desirable resume or portfolio for students’ future career in regenerative medicine research or related careers.  

Like many of the other research programs, such as RISE and RISE Affiliate programs, RAMP seeks to be accessible and inclusive by emphasizing tacit knowledge. Also, like the other programs, RAMP offers an extensive mentorship system by engaging in active guidance to lessen the confusing nature of the training and learning process. RAMP is slightly different from the other research programs because of the 3 year commitment and the school year participation. There is also an option to earn class credit for the program that can count towards a student’s degree. It’s a very beneficial program for those interested in stem cell research and therapies to get exposure to the cutting edge technology in the respective field. 

Students who are interested in RAMP or any other UCR research program should visit their websites for more information on activities, deadlines and application requirements.