In recent years, the fields of astronomy and physics have seen a growth in the number of post-baccalaureate programs for students in between undergraduate and graduate programs. Bridge programs vary in the details from school to school, but they all have similar goals: provide the experience, support, and preparation for students who might otherwise not be able to get in to Ph.D. programs in Physics/Astronomy. They tend to specifically target underrepresented minorities, but are open to any student who could benefit from the program. The programs generally all feature:

  • Full funding (tuition paid, full-year stipend)

  • Participation in research

  • Coursework (graduate and/or advanced undergraduate)

  • Professional development, GRE prep, career/graduate admissions advicea and guidance

  • One-on-one mentoring

Further benefits (e.g. granting of a Master's degree or a fast-track into a Ph.D. program) and requirements (e.g., citizenship) vary from school to school, so please read the websites linked below for details.

Background image: the 25th Anniversary Hubble Image of star-forming region Westerlund 2credits NASA, ESA, the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA), A. Nota (ESA/STScI), and the Westerlund 2 Science Team


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GRAD-MAP is generously funded by the University of Maryland College of Computer, Mathematical, & Natural Sciences and the Departments of Astronomy and Physics, and the NSF Career, PIRE (Global Relay of Observatories Watching Transients Happen), and AAG programs.