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U-M PREP Application Process

All applications are carefully reviewed and evaluated by our U-M PREP Admissions Committee and we contact all of our applicants with a response beginning in early May.

Please ensure that you meet the U-M PREP eligibility requirements below before applying.

U-M PREP Application

The U-M PREP application is now closed. The application for the 2025-2026 year will open in January 2025.

Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility for the U-M PREP is stipulated by NIH grant requirements.

Applicants to U-M PREP:

  • Must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
  • Must have already graduated or be in the process of graduating with a baccalaureate degree in a biomedically relevant science, from an accredited U.S. college or university, no more than 36 months prior to applying to U-M PREP.
  • Must not be currently enrolled in a degree program.
  • Must plan to apply to a PhD program in a biomedically relevant science after successful completion of U-M PREP.
  • Must belong to groups considered underrepresented in the biomedical sciences as defined by the NIH, including: 
    • Individuals from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown by the National Science Foundation to be underrepresented in health-related sciences on a national basis (see data at and the report Women, Minorities, and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering). The following racial and ethnic groups have been shown to be underrepresented in biomedical research: Blacks or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders.  In addition, it is recognized that underrepresentation can vary from setting to setting; individuals from racial or ethnic groups that can be demonstrated convincingly to be underrepresented by the grantee institution should be encouraged to participate in NIH programs to enhance diversity. For more information on racial and ethnic categories and definitions, see the OMB Revisions to the Standards for Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity
    • Individuals with disabilities, who are defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, as described in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended. (see data PDF at 
    • Individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, defined as those who meet two or more of the following criteria:
      1. Were or currently are homeless, as defined by the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (definition);
      2. Were or currently are in the foster care system, as defined by the Administration for Children and Families (definition);
      3. Were eligible for the Federal Free and Reduced Lunch Program for two or more years (definition);
      4. Have/had no parents or legal guardians who completed a bachelor’s degree (see PDF);
      5. Were or currently are eligible for Federal Pell grants (definition);
      6. Received support from the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) as a parent or child (definition).
      7. Grew up in one of the following areas: a) a U.S. rural area, as designated by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Rural Health Grants Eligibility Analyzer, or b) a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services-designated Low-Income and Health Professional Shortage Areas (qualifying zipcodes are included in the file). Only one of the two possibilities in #7 can be used as a criterion for the disadvantaged background definition.
Application Details

Applicants must complete an online application which includes an essay portion, and provide electronic unofficial copies of college transcripts from all institutions attended, and three letters of recommendation. Unofficial transcripts from your undergraduate degree-granting institution uploaded into your application are sufficient for admission review.

However, please make sure you are submitting a copy of your transcript and not an advising report or grade print-out. The name of your prior institution, the courses you took, and the grades you received should all be clearly visible. If your degree has already been granted, a degree granted date should also be visible.