Charles Drew University of Medicine And Science - Division of Cancer Research And Training
Undergraduate - Program Overview

Program Overview

Undergraduate Summer Program

The Undergraduate Cancer Research Training Program (UCRTP) is a 12-week summer internship hosted by the Center to Eliminate Cancer Health Disparities at Charles Drew University (CDU), in partnership with the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA. It is designed for 10* outstanding minority and underrepresented undergraduate students who are contemplating a career in biomedical-related sciences and working with underserved communities. An individualized program is developed for each undergraduate participant, who will work with a faculty Principal Investigator or his/her associates.

At either a CDU or UCLA laboratory students will conduct research alongside a designated mentor on cancer research projects. The goal of the UCRTP is to ensure that each undergraduate student acquires the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to become a proficient cancer researcher. Upon completion of the program, each undergraduate trainee will have developed a research paper based on the findings of the ancillary project to be given to his or her lead mentor for evaluation and feedback. Students will then have the opportunity present their findings at a professional research conference or symposium.

* Two students may be offered support throughout the year to develop a more comprehensive and independent research project.


Student must:

be low income or underrepresented minority (African American, Mexican American/Chicano, Hispanic American/Latino, Native American, Asian Pacific Islander, Native Alaskan or Native Hawaiian) 
be an undergraduate freshman, sophomore, or junior
have a minimum 3.0 GPA
Have completed college-level general biology and introductory chemistry.


Research Topics

Students will learn from scientists conducting research relevant to eliminating cancer health disparities, including but not limited to:
The role of community, environment and lifestyle choices on cancer prognosis and outcomes
Molecular, cell, developmental biology and genetics of cancer
Translating basic research into therapeutic agents for patient benefits
Early diagnosis and treatment
The influence of nutrition, diet, exercise on cancer risk
Emerging Technology (i.e. Nanotechnology)


Amount of stipend awarded is dependent upon the length of the student’s participation, with a maximum award totaling $4,000 for a twelve week commitment.



Please apply through our online application.

For those unable to apply online, please download the application form here.


Submit unofficial or official transcripts


                             1.     Unofficial transcripts must be in PDF format and emailed as an attachment.

                             2.     Official transcripts must be mailed to:

CDU-Division of Cancer Research and Training

ATTN: Ms. Milena Pavlova - UCRTP

1748 East 118th Street


Los Angeles, CA 90059

Letter of Recommendation     |     CDU-UCLA Brochure     |     CDU-UCLA Flyer