Information for Applicants to the MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Program

Application to the MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Program

Interested students will be required to submit an application form and three letters of recommendation from college or university science or mathematics faculty. Freshmen relatively new to the University may choose to obtain letters from their high-school teachers, although college/university letters are preferred. Online forms are available at MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Program Application Form.

Please be advised that you must separately apply and be admitted to the University. Applications for admission are available at Visit the University at

MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Selection Criteria

The MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Program Advisory Committee will evaluate the application of each candidate and the three letters of recommendation. Students must enroll in undergraduate majors at Cal State LA in disciplines useful in the biomedical sciences (chemistry, biochemistry, biophysics, biology, microbiology, mathematics, or related fields). In addition, students must have:

  • demonstrated high academic ability in course work. An A-B average and good letters of recommendation from college or university science faculty are regarded as indicating a student of high ability. However, we will entertain applications from students who do not yet have the academic profile above, yet in the estimation of science faculty and the Program Advisory Committee have potential for success in a research career and can raise their academic performance to a 3.2 GPA or better before they graduate.Requirements for admission into the Cal State LA MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars program are maintained liberal and flexible by design. While applicants generally have a strong GPA, our MBRS-RISE program has included students whose GPA's at entry range from 2.50 to 4.00. However, students who are admitted into the program with less than a 3.00 were accepted because they demonstrated (generally through strong letters of recommendation and the personal statement) considerable promise for success in academics and research. It is expected that all students will experience an improvement in their academic achievement through participation in MBRS-RISE, and that undergraduates will graduate with a 3.2 or higher grade point average.
  • completed sufficient college-level courses in biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics so they are on track to graduation, and can be a reasonable background to their research training.
  • shown an interest in a career in the sciences or mathematics and a desire to do independent research.
  • demonstrated a determination to enter graduate programs leading to the Ph.D. in science or mathematics in areas useful to biomedical research following completion of the Bachelor of Science degree.
  • either U.S. citizenship or legal permanent residency.

Bridges to the Future Program Participants

Students who participate in the Bridges to the Future Programs at Los Angeles City College, East Los Angeles College, and Pasadena City College and complete that program with high achievement and consistent career goals are vertically integrated into the MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Program when they transfer to Cal State LA.


Students considered to be qualified for the program will be interviewed by the MBRS-RISE Undergraduate Scholars Advisory Committee. The Committee will then make the final determination on student admission to the program, and communicate their decision to the applicant.