Academic Connections

San Diego

Academic Connections Research Scholars


Research Scholars, offers an opportunity for high achieving high school students to work side-by-side on projects with one of about 20 world renown faculty researchers in the academic disciplines such as biochemistry, chemistry, and nanotechnology. Research Scholars work full-time on discovery-based research projects in the lab of one of the mentors. Students applying for this program must be entering the 10th - 12th grade and have a 3.8 (or above) weighted cumulative GPA. Applicants will be required to answer essay questions demonstrating the level of their interest in participating, and what their research interests are. Participants will be matched with an appropriate mentor based on research interests. Preferential consideration will be granted to students who have overcome adversity in their desire to become scientists.

Most students opt to live on campus in the residence hall, which enables them to experience living on a college campus. Each Wednesday evening you will meet with Dr. Komives or her designee, to discuss how the research is going, as well as sharing experiences. Whether you live on campus or commute, both options afford the student opportunities to participate in evening and weekend activities. These activities include sports, arts and crafts, music, dances, talent shows and more. Participants are enabled to take advantage of the resources the beautiful UCSD campus has to offer. The resident halls are staffed with an experienced and trained Resident Dean, Assistant Resident Dean, office staff and residential assistants who provide supervision 24 hours per day, 7 days a week.

Some advantages of acceptance into UCSD Academic Connections Research Scholars

Established in 1994, the Social Change Model approaches leadership as a purposeful, collaborative, values-based process that results in positive social change. The Model was built upon the following assumptions:

  • “Leadership” is concerned with effecting change on behalf of others and society
  • College-level research projects with world renown researchers, residential and extracurricular activities
  • Opportunity to explore a specific academic field
  • Exposure and access to state-of-the-art courses, technology and facilities
  • Earn college prep units and recognition for program participation on college admission applications
  • Study with other like-minded academic students from all over the country and the world
  • SAT preparation (for an additional fee) and UCSD admission advising

Learn About the Application Process