College of Science First-Year and Transfer Student Research Programs: ACCESS Scholars and SRI

The College of Science is committed to providing robust research and career exploration opportunities to our students throughout their time at the U. Our two signature first-year research programs are ACCESS Scholars and the Science Research Initiative (SRI). Both programs offer students the opportunity to form connections with peers and leaders across campus, include coursework designed to introduce various skills critical for success in undergraduate research, and place students in a research lab in the second semester. No previous research experience is required to participate.

The Science Research Initiative (SRI) program offers all new and transfer students with College of Science majors the opportunity to participate in scientific research with U scientists. The SRI will jumpstart your path of academic success, and give you needed skills to prepare for an internship or a career – whether that’s in a research lab, an office, or one of the many other opportunities open to our graduates.
Learn more at
If you have questions, please email Laura Rupert (

ACCESS Scholars
ACCESS Scholars represent students from all dimensions of diversity who are committed to advancing gender equity in the STEM disciplines. ACCESS Scholars comprise a community of supportive peers and a network of over 800 alumni. The program begins with a two-week intensive summer experience (6/17-6/30) wherein scholars explore the science disciplines while learning to navigate the world of STEM in college. In addition to placement and mentorship in research groups, ACCESS students will participate in community building and tailored professional development activities throughout their first year of college.

Learn more at
If you have questions, please email Sam Shaw (

Application Instructions
All applicants must complete the required questions in the first section of the application. If you are interested in both programs, please complete all sections below. If you are interested in only ACCESS or SRI, only complete the questions in the corresponding section.
Students can apply for both ACCESS and the SRI. If you are admitted into both programs, you will be contacted to discuss which program is right for your goals.

Supplemental Questions
  1. General Interest Information
    • I'm interested in applying to:
    • Please provide your cell phone number
    • What undergraduate major(s) do you plan to pursue at the University of Utah?
    • Will you be participating in any of the following programs?
  2. Section 2: SRI
    • Are you interested in applying for a scholarship to support your participation?
    • How did you learn about the Science Research Initiative?
    • To what extent do you think you will pursue a science-related career?
    • We are collecting some general information to evaluate the success of the Science Research Initiative. The following question is optional: What is the highest level of your parent's or guardian's education?
    • We have all the information we need in order to consider you for the SRI. If this is the only program you would like to apply for, you may scroll to the bottom and click Submit.
    • What is your reason for applying to the Science Research Initiative?
    • What type of research are you interested in?
  3. Section 3: ACCESS Scholars
    • ACCESS Scholars seeks to build a diverse and inclusive cohort with individuals from different backgrounds. How might your own life experiences, leadership qualities, and/or goals contribute to advancing equity in STEM fields?
    • Are you able to commit to the two-week summer program from 6/17/23 - 6/30/23? This is a required component of the ACCESS Scholars program.
    • High School (or previous institution) Transcript
    • How did you learn about ACCESS Scholars?
    • How will being an ACCESS Scholar help you succeed as an undergraduate in the sciences? Highlight your interests and academic/career goals.
    • Is there anything else in your background, such as work experience, volunteering, leadership positions, etc., that is not covered in the previous two questions that you’d like to share?
    • Letter of recommendation - this should address your scientific interests and/or abilities, your leadership skills or potential, and your capacity to contribute to a supportive and inclusive community. Letters from teachers or other academic mentors strongly preferred.
  4. I have filled out all of the application questions for the program(s) I am applying for.