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Graduate Student Mentorship Initiative (GSMI)

We run the Graduate School Mentorship Initiative (GSMI) program with the mission to help graduate school applicants from minoritized backgrounds by pairing them with STEM professionals in their respective STEM disciplines.  We provide our applicants with graduate school preparation material, one-on-one guidance from a mentor in their STEM field, financial assistance in the form of fee waivers, feedback on written materials, access to webinars, mock interviews, and access to a broader community of peers and mentors.

Since 2019, we have helped a total of 793 students (generally around 70-80% of each year's cohort) receive acceptances into STEM graduate school programs, including Master's and PhD programs. ​​Our applicants were accepted to graduate programs in Aerospace/Mechanical Engineering, Astronomy, Biomedical Engineering, Cell & Molecular Biology, Chemistry, Neuroscience, Oceanography, Physics, and Psychology at several universities throughout the U.S. and some abroad!

2024 GSMI Flyer_v2.png

Click to enlarge. Flyer by Catharine Brady.

Demographic information on our GSMI students (2019-2024)

  • 48% identified as Latinx, 19% as Black, 3.5% as Indigenous

  • 66% of our cohort identified as women
  • 48% applicants were first-generation (first-gen) college students

  • 65% applicants were from low-income backgrounds

  • 22% started their education at community college

Learn more about the 2023 GSMI team, mentors and scholars here!

Applications for GSMI 2024 scholar and mentors are now closed.

For any questions, please contact:

Thank you to our partners!

This work is supported by the Simons Foundation


STEM Graduate School Applicants

Please note that for 2024 we will only be accepting 100 graduate school applicants to participate in our program. If you have questions about this, please contact Thank you for your understanding!
  • Students from minoritized backgrounds applying to STEM Master's and PhD programs in Fall 2024

    • We welcome applications from students from historically minoritized backgrounds, including those related to race and ethnicity, gender, first-generation college student, low-income, child of immigrants, disability, veterans, gender identity, sexual orientation, justice history, students with demonstrated commitment to improving diversity and inclusion, etc.

    • ​​College seniors, post-graduate students, post-baccalaureate students, and other applicants in post-bachelor positions, including those working as research assistants/technicians, etc.

    • If you are not applying to graduate school this Fall 2024, you are not eligible. However, if you sign up for our mailing list, you will have access to a subset of the upcoming GSMI 2024 Webinars.

  • All STEM fields are eligible, which include: AstronomyBiochemistryEnvironmental ScienceMathematics,  Molecular and Cellular Biology, NeuroscienceOceanographyPharmacologyPhysics, Psychology, Public Health… and many more!

    • Disclaimer: The majority of our resources are geared towards graduate school applicants applying to programs in the biosciences. We are working towards generating more field-specific content across STEM disciplines, however.

    • Social & Behavioral Sciences: We acknowledge that economics, sociology, and political sciences are important members of the STEM family. Unfortunately, we cannot support these disciplines this year, but we hope to in the future!

  • Unfortunately, the following students are not eligible: 

    • Students applying to Post-bacs (PREP), PA, MD, MD/PhD, PharmD, Non-STEM PhD programs ​​

    • Students seeking support on fellowship applications who are not currently applying to PhD programs.


Scholar Selection:

  • We will be prioritizing applications for students who demonstrate strong interest in applying to graduate school this Fall 2024 and are in need of graduate school application preparation.​ In the application, you will be asked the following questions listed below. In your application, we strongly recommend that you provide detailed and thoughtful answers (between 250-500 words) to the questions below. Your responses will inform us why you want to be part of GSMI 2024. 

    • Why are you interested in applying to graduate school in your field? 

    • What are your long-term career objectives beyond graduate school and how will graduate school prepare you for this career

    • What is your motivation in applying for GSMI 2024?

    • How does your experience contribute to diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM? Feel free to mention your personal experience, contributions, perspective, or how you plan to contribute in the future.

    • What resources are available at your institution to aid in applying to graduate school (e.g. writing/career center, etc.)? Have you accessed those resources? Do you have a mentor that can help you with graduate school applications?

STEM Mentors


  • Commitment to helping a GSMI Applicant during their graduate school application process 

  • Provide feedback on graduate school applications (personal statement and CV) 

  • Regular email correspondence with our GSMI Applicants

  • STEM professionals including PhD students, PhD candidates, post-doctoral fellows, Faculty, post-PhDs in industry, and other non-academic positions

  • All STEM fields eligible (see above for included disciplines)

  • Sign-ups for mentors will open in mid-June. Due to amazing interest in mentoring from the scientific community, we may only open sign-ups in specific fields. Please subscribe to our newsletter or follow our social media accounts to be notified of when mentorship positions open. 

Program Timeline

Scholars (Graduate School Applicants)




Please contact us here or at if you have any questions. We look forward to hearing from you!

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