Skip to main content
Stanford Biosciences

ADVANCE Summer Institute






ADVANCE will be 100% in-person for Summer 2024.

ADVANCE Program Dates: Monday, July 1, 2024 – Friday, August 23th, 2024


*The ADVANCE Summer Institute is only for matriculated, incoming first year Biosciences PhD students*

***To be a part of the ADVANCE Summer Institute you must contact the home program that has offered you admissions and let them know you wish to be nominated. Please also contact the ADVANCE Director with an email stating your interest in ADVANCE***



The ADVANCE Summer Institute is an intensive 8-week program for incoming and matriculated Biosciences graduate students. Through ADVANCE, we facilitate the smooth transition to becoming a Stanford Biosciences PhD student, laying the foundation for a successful and rewarding graduate experience. In addition to individualized and group mentorship and training, ADVANCE Scholars will participate in their first laboratory rotation within their Biosciences home program. The summer before a matriculating student’s first year offers an excellent opportunity to transition to graduate school without the usual whirlwind of activity that begins in the fall. Currently, ADVANCE Summer Institute cohort selection is based on a nomination process from your home program, there is no need to apply, but please indicate interest with your home program and with the ADVANCE director.

The ADVANCE Summer Institute is a program for incoming matriculated Biosciences PhD graduate students who come from backgrounds historically and presently marginalized in academia and are first-generation to college. ADVANCE scholars are nominated by their Biosciences Home Program, and they are welcome to nominate any student they feel would benefit from the ADVANCE Summer Institute.

The ADVANCE Summer Institute was built on three pillars; academic advancement; professional and leadership development; and community building and outreach. During the 8-week program ADVANCE scholars will engage with Stanford Biosciences graduate student, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty members in various academic workshops, group activities, and one on one mentoring. ADVANCE scholars will also be required to participate in an 8-week laboratory rotation within their home program. Additionally, ADVANCE scholars will also participate and engage in professional and career training that will prepare our scholars for their graduate studies and building their professional networks for all postdoctoral career options. Lastly, ADVANCE scholars will engage in community building and leadership training events and activities that will strengthen their support system at Stanford. After the conclusion of the Summer Institute, our ADVANCE scholars will also engage in additional periodic programming during the academic year that aligns with our three pillars.



The ADVANCE Summer Institute evolved from a similar program created by the Biomedical Association for the Interests of Minority Students (BioAIMS) in 2010. ADVANCE seeks to prepare students for a successful graduate career at Stanford and we look forward to building on the successes of the past 10 years.

ADVANCE scholars will participate in small literature discussion groups led by faculty and postdocs and attend workshops that will support their successful transition to graduate school. Additionally, they will participate in mentoring and social activities hosted by Program Leaders, a team of current Bioscience PhD students that focus on providing mentorship as a mechanism for fostering a sense of belonging and community. Support for ADVANCE participants will continue throughout their first year and beyond through mentoring, tutoring and research update meetings.



ADVANCE is motivated by the Biosciences’ commitment to be fully inclusive and supportive of all students, and by the belief that a diverse graduate student body enhances the quality of the educational experience for all students.

Key ADVANCE program components include:

  • Stipend for full participation in summer programming
  • 8 week laboratory research rotation in scholars home program
  • Journal Clubs
  • Peer, postdoc and faculty mentoring
  • Exposure to Stanford resources and relevant offices
  • Tours of local Biotechnology companies
  • Weekly community building and social activities
  • Multiple opportunties to network
  • Workshops on important topics such as:
    • Transitioning to graduate school
    • Reading and analyzing science papers
    • Flourishing at Stanford
    • Inclusion and Belonging and Leadership
    • Research ethics
    • Strategies for combating impostor fears
    • Career paths for Biosciences PhD graduates
    • Technical communication skills
    • Weekly surveys of basic science concepts
    • Opportunities to sharpen writing skills through an NSF GRFP writing workshop series



Please check the Event Calendar for more information.


Marco Monroy, PhD

Associate Director of Biosciences Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging;

Director, Bioscience ADVANCE Institute



Any questions/suggestions, please email the Director, Marco Monroy, PhD at