The Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC) / Initiative for Maximizing Student Diversity (IMSD) program offers students multiple avenues for leadership and personal growth.

Chris Zachary at ABRCMS
Former IMSD Fellow Chris Zachary on stage with Dr. Avery August at the 2019 ABRCMS Opening Ceremonies in Anaheim, California.

One opportunity the MARC/IMSD program provides is support to attend a scientific conference to present research from their laboratory experience. These conferences expose students to a wider variety of research and institutions while providing a valuable opportunity to network. Travel support is offered through MARC/IMSD, making the experience financially feasible.

Our program also allows participants to be leaders to future generations. Activities, such as an after-school science program started by MARC/IMSD students in 2015, give participants a chance to reach out to middle school students in Columbia to share their love for science and engage in the community.

Peer Mentorship

MARC/IMSD students receive individualized mentoring and advising from the MARC/IMSD Faculty Mentors, MARC/IMSD Graduate Fellows, MARC/IMSD Peer Mentors, and MARC/IMSD Staff. These groups help participants find their way in science, answer questions and troubleshoot the struggles that inevitably arise in college.

Peer Mentors are upper-class students who serves as a resource, a helping handing, a sounding board, and a referral service. Each mentor provides useful advice to their mentees to help them acclimate to the University, succeed academically, and pursue their careers in the field of biomedical research.

“One of the great things about Peer Mentors is that they have had at least two years of being in the program. They really serve as allies, advocates and coaches for incoming students while helping them maximize their undergraduate research experiences.”

MARC/IMSD students receive individualized mentoring and advising services
Former IMSD Fellow and Peer Mentor Jaylon Ball at his weekly meeting with mentee Lolade Ayedun.