Maximizing Access to Research Careers Undergraduate Student Training in Academic Research (MARC U-STAR)

The MARC U-STAR program provides research experience and financial support for 10 students from underrepresented groups who intend to pursue a Ph.D. degree in Biomedical Sciences (biology, chemistry, biochemistry, psychology, and epidemiology). Students participate in the program for two years. Students must have 60 or more credit hours by the time they begin the MARC program (June 1 of each year) and a grade point of 3.0 or higher. Students who participate in the program must also be able to participate in Academic Year Research (about 15 hours a week) at TSU, Meharry Medical College, or Vanderbilt University and full-time summer research at another institution (i.e. any University that provides summer research opportunities) for a minimum of eight (8) weeks of the summer.

Tennessee State University has had a MARC/MARC U-STAR Program for the last 30 years, which was directed by Dr. Prem Kahlon in the Department of Biological Sciences until his retirement in 2012. Currently, Dr. Margaret Whalen, in the Department of Chemistry, is the program director. 

Over the past 20 years our trainees have given numerous presentations on their research at local, regional, and national scientific meetings. Over 100 of these presentations were at national meetings, including those of the American Chemical Society (ACS), American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB), and American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) as well as the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS). Our students have received  awards for their research presentations over this time. Research conducted by our trainees has resulted in numerous peer-reviewed publications.