GEMS- Graduate Experiences for Multicultural Students


The goal of the GEMS Program is to provide summer research opportunities in basic and translational research in the areas of Heart, Lung and Blood Diseases.  The GEMS Program comprises two components, one is made up of undergraduate students and the other,  known as GEMS-HP, consists of students currently enrolled in Health Professional training.

The overarching goal of the GEMS program is to support the development of future biomedical scientists by providing undergraduate students with research opportunities and exposure to the realistic lifestyle of biomedical research. Therefore we are looking for students who plan to pursue a lifelong career in research.

Selected undergraduate GEMS interns will participate in an intense nine-week summer research internship program, from June 10 through August 9, 2019. The program will consist of lectures, professional-development workshops, and a mentored laboratory research assignment. Participating laboratories are drawn from basic science as well as clinical science Departments at the UC-Denver Anschutz Medical Campus (UCD-AMC) performing research relating to heart, lung and blood (HLB) diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), vasculopathies, pulmonary inflammation, acute lung injury, pulmonary fibrosis, asthma, cystic fibrosis, stem cell regenerative medicine (as it relates to HLB applications), COPD, pulmonary hypertension and pediatric pulmonary disease (i.e Bronchopulmonary dysplasia).  Research projects in the fields of biochemistry, molecular genetics, cell and developmental biology, human medical genetics, immunology, microbiology and molecular biology in the context of an HLB disease are common.


The program will include:

  1. Lectures in basic principles of biochemistry and molecular biology
  2. Training in Responsible Conduct of Research
  3. Faculty research seminars in various disciplines
  4. An eight-week laboratory research project
  5. Academic skills workshops
  6. Group social events



Students from around the nation (continental US and US territories) are welcome to apply. GEMS interns are selected on the basis of interest in biomedical science research careers, academic achievement and inclusion in an underrepresented group or category (first generation college attendee, low income, financial need, or ethnic identity as African American, Hispanic, American Indian, Alaska Native, or Southeast Asian, Pacific Islander). Successful undergraduate applicants will have completed two years of college and demonstrated aptitude in one or more laboratory science courses. Those who will have already graduated by the start of the program and international students (with student visas) are not eligible.

Accepted students must agree to attend the entire length of the program and commit full-time.  Students will not be allowed to take extended vacation or days off during the program period.  Please note that all of the following components must be received by the deadline, February 1st, in order for the applicantion to be considered:

  1. Undergraduate transcripts (official or unofficial) showing a minimum overall GPA of 3.0 and 3.2 in sciences;
  2. Two (2) letters of recommendation from professors or advisors (at least one from a science professor);
  3. A personal statement of interest in graduate education, with future career goals and a description of how the GEMS Program fits into your career goals; and 
  4. Completion of the online application form (see Left Sidebar for the link)



With guidance from their research mentor, GEMS interns will write a manuscript -style report of their research results and deliver their research findings in a 15-minute oral presentation.  Undergraduate GEMS students will be evaluated on their written and oral presentations and their overall participation and performance throughout the summer.  The student with the best overall performance will be awarded a paid trip to a national scientific conference to present their summer research project. 


Stipend / Living Allowance

Undergraduate GEMS interns will receive a stipend/living allowance of $4000.  Out-of-State GEMS participants will be housed in shared student dormitories on a nearby undergraduate campus.  Students will need to pay for their meals and for a portion of the room and board expenses (approx. $500.00) out of the stipend but GEMS Program staff will set-up the housing accommodations.



Interns will receive round-trip transportation to and from Denver.  Airfare will be paid by the GEMS program and students who choose to drive to Denver can be reimbursed for mileage up to the cost of the airfare for the equivalent trip.


Anschutz Medical Campus

The University of Colorado Denver Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colorado houses modern clinical facilities in the in-patient hospital, the Cancer Center, Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Institute, The Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes and the Anschutz Out-Patient Pavilion. It is also home to updated and well-equipped research facilities.  Two hundred research laboratories, including all the basic science departments, moved to this new state-of-the-art facility in the summer and fall of 2004. Available facilities include those for general biomedical research and a full range of specialized research facilities with state-of-the-art equipment including instruments for flow cytometry, X-ray crystallography, mass spectrometry / proteomics, NMR, ORD, CD, surface plasmon resonance (BiaCore), fMRI, DNA sequencing, gene array analysis, and electron and confocal microscopy. 


The Denver Metropolitan Area

A modern metropolis of over two million residents, metropolitan Denver offers a wide variety of cultural and recreational facilities. The climate in Denver and its environs is exceptionally pleasant, with mild, sunny winter, and warm, dry summers. Numerous year-round recreational opportunities are afforded by the Rocky Mountains and other nearby attractions.