What is a Bridge Program?

IGEN, the ACS, AGU and APS are partnering with higher education institutions that have bridge programs to increase the number of physical science doctoral degrees earned by Black, Latinx and Indigenous students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Bridge programs invite promising senior undergraduates or recent bachelor degree recipients in the physical sciences (astronomy, chemical engineering, chemistry, geoscience, physics, or closely related fields) to participate in one-to-two year transitional graduate programs or traditional graduate programs. Some transition programs are post-baccalaureate programs that provide research experience, advanced coursework, mentoring, and coaching to prepare a graduate school application while others are traditional PhD programs.

Bridge program elements vary from institution to institution, but IGEN partners identify academic departments that are committed to providing intentional support, mentoring, and access to resources that enable their graduate students to thrive.

How to Apply

In order to ensure that applicants are considered by the programs of greatest interest to them, it is recommended that you apply through the traditional graduate application process for these graduate programs. If for some reason, that process does not work, you are encouraged to apply through the IGEN Common Application system.

Eligibility

Eligibility for the disciplinary society bridge programs varies; however, for all the programs applicants must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident (some programs may consider students who are part of the DACA program)
  • Have at least a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, biochemistry, chemical engineering, physics, biophysics, applied physics, engineering physics, astrophysics, geoscience and other closely related disciplines
  • Not have an MS or PhD
  • Satisfy one or more of the following criteria in the current academic year:
    • Did not apply to a physics, chemistry or geoscience graduate program; or
    • Applied to one or more physics, chemistry or geoscience graduate programs, but were not accepted by any program
  • Be committed to improving diversity in the physical sciences

Application Timeline

  • December 15 through March 31: Applications are accepted.
    • Recommendation letters must be submitted before applications can be reviewed. 
    • Please complete your portion early enough to allow recommenders time to complete their part!
  • Early April: IGEN Bridge Partner programs begin reviewing applications
  • Mid April: IGEN Bridge Partner programs interview applicants.
  • Late April through May: IGEN Bridge Partner programs offer admission to applicants.

THE IGEN BRIDGE APPLICATION PORTAL IS NOW OPEN THROUGH MARCH 31.

Watch Success stories of the Graduate Students