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Program Overview

The South Texas Doctoral Bridge Program (STDBP) is a partnership between Texas State University in San Marcos (Master’s degree granting institution) and UT Health at San Antonio (Doctoral degree granting institution). Together, we work to provide master’s level students with the necessary academic preparation and skills to facilitate their successful transition into research-intensive PhD programs in the biomedical sciences. 

The South Texas Doctoral Bridge Program is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to promote the participation of individuals from underrepresented groups in the pursuit of advanced degrees in biomedical research. To support this effort, we provide financial and academic support, and professional development activities to support students during their Master’s degree at Texas State University to prepare them to transition to a biomedical PhD program at UT Health or any PhD granting institution.

To participate in the program, you must also be enrolled as a master's student at Texas State University.

Participating STDBP Scholars are hired as Graduate Research Assistants (GRA) at Texas State University and conduct research under the mentorship of participating STDBP Faculty Mentors. The current salary for STDBP GRAs is $18,552 per year. STDBP Scholars also receive tuition reimbursement for up to 2 years of M.S. their program. Additionally, STDBP Scholars receive travel funds to present research at state or national meetings (up to $1500).

STDBP Scholars also receive benefits that improve their competitiveness for admission to Ph.D. programs. Scholars receive access to career-development activities designed to increase the strength of Ph.D. program applications, GRE and interview preparation, and individualized career mentoring and guidance.


Bridge students


Why is this program important?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recognizes that there are too few minority doctors and researchers, and this contributes to more health disparities between minority and non-minority populations and actually hurts patient care in minority and underserved communities (discussed WBUR Article). So, the NIH sponsors programs like ours that encourage biomedical Master's students from groups underrepresented in biomedicine to continue their education and complete a doctoral degree.

The South Texas Doctoral Bridge Program is funded by the NIH through the R25 Bridges to the Doctorate Program (GM102783)