The Graduate Research Training Initiative for Student Enhancement (G-RISE) is a student development program granted by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. Its goal is to develop a diverse pool of students earning a PhD and provide them with the necessary skills to successfully transition into careers in the biomedical research workforce. The RISE program at Ponce Health Sciences University was funded by R25GM082406 from 2008 until 2022, when it converted to G-RISE (supported by T32GM144896). It provides the organizational structure and extensive mentoring necessary to ensure trainees have a sense of belonging and scientific identity while empowering them to prepare for and overcome obstacles in their scientific careers.

The G-RISE Program at Ponce Health Science University has specific measurable objectives that aim to provide trainees with:
1. Professional, operational, and technical research skills training
2. Communication skills training
3. Team building/networking opportunities


RISE eligibility criteria:

  • US citizens or permanent residents
  • Enrolled full-time in the PHSU Biomedical Sciences PhD program.

Application deadline to Ph.D. program is April 15. Application forms are available in the PHSU admissions office or online at:

 Students accepted to the Ph.D. program will be considered for appointment in the RISE program. RISE admission decisions will be made after students have been officially accepted into the PhD program.   

Criteria for incoming PhD students:

 Undergraduate GPA and coursework, research experience, post-bachelor’s coursework, presentations/publications, interview, and writing sample.

Criteria for current students in the PhD program:

 Graduate GPA, progress towards PhD (presentations/publications, fellowship applications, research proposal), and letters of recommendation.



To improve their performance, participation and success in the Ph.D./RISE Program, selected trainees receive the following benefits:

Financial support

Stipend of $27,144.00 per year, paid tuition, and annual funds for lab supplies.

Networking opportunities

  • Paid travel to attend one domestic, scientific conference per year.
  • Participation in: biomedical seminars, lunch with the speaker, regional scientific conferences.


A structured mentoring team comprised of a faculty advisor, a research mentor and a student peer mentor to provide advice, support and guidance as needed.

 Professional development 

  • Continuous and enhanced “hands-on” professional and research training in multiple topics related to career development and technical skills.
  • Advanced instruction in communication and writing
  • Participation in annual Philosophy of Science retreat and other developmental workshops.

Program Evaluator

Carlamarie Noboa Ramos, PhD, MS       University of Puerto Rico-Medical Sciences Campus

Program Coordinator
Jean Marie Schmidt

Contact Us

For program inquiries, please email , or contact:

Caroline Appleyard
Rise Program Director
Office #62-Research Building II (J).
Phone: 787-840-2575, ext.4710 (office) 5658/5664 (lab)
Fax: 787-841-1040

James Porter
RISE Associate Program Director
Office #63-Research Building II (J).
Phone: 787-840-2575, ext. 4709

Jean Marie Schmidt, M.Ed.
Program Coordinator, PHSU RISE Graduate
Office: Research Building # 223
Tel: (787) 284-2038

Mailing address
Ponce School of Medicine
PO Box 7004
Ponce, PR 00732


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 Ponce Health Sciences University 
for your education

We are working on providing you with an improved and updated application experience. You will soon receive information about the launch of our new application portal for the 2023-24 academic year

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