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Goals of the Program

  • To expand access to research and provide new and innovative career development opportunities to emerging researchers from racial and ethnic minorities and other health disparity populations.
  • To increase the number of researchers conducting research to reduce health disparities in older adult populations.

GEMSTEM Program Information

Our hope is to recruit innovative thinkers who bring unique experiences, ideas, and diverse perspectives to broaden and diversify the aging field. 

In this program, students on the scholar track will receive the following:

Research Training

Hands-on research training and activities to the development of meaningful lab-based skills and/or data analysis, scientific writing and publication, and conference presentations.


Emphasizing the importance of diversity in aging and the relevance of geroscience to students’ lives, families, and communities.

Career development

PhD Programs, medical school, and other research-related career opportunities in aging.

Peer Network

Connect and build community with other peers at USC and national and international professionals in the MSTEM field.

Time Committment

We anticipate that 8 hours a week will be spent exclusively on research and 2 hours a week on seminars/workshops/symposia/social events. This is a multi-year program, and our hope is that all research scholars will participate continuously until they graduate. 

hours of lab research
hours of participation in symposia, workshops, seminars and events

Program Support

GEMSTEM provides an opportunity for 16 scholars from diverse underrepresented communities to receive:

  • Mentored research training and program participation (paid employment)
  • Travel support to attend Geroscience conferences (GSA, SACNAS, or ABRCAMS)
  • Paid annual GSA membership
  • Development of peer network at USC and professionals in the MSTEM field.

Program Funding

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded the program to attract, encourage, and support undergraduates from historically underrepresented groups into the aging field (MSTEM). The grant number for this program is the following: GR1059540 – Gerontology Enriching MSTEM (GEMSTEM) to Enhance Diversity in Aging.

The program was developed and administered by Sean Curran, Jennifer Ailshire, and John Walsh.

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