Career Inspiration Ahead

Six science and engineering undergraduates to be selected for Beckman Scholars program

Six UC Santa Barbara science and engineering undergraduates are about to get a career-inspiring boost in the form of a prestigious 15-month mentored research experience in their field of study. While these fortunate students have yet to be selected, there can be no question that they will be exceptional young people at the dawn of their scientific careers who will make discoveries in chemistry, biology, or interdisciplinary connections between those fields. This remarkable opportunity will be made possible by the generosity of the Beckman Scholars Program, which recently selected UCSB as one of its grantee institutions.

“This is a big deal,” said Songi Han, a professor of chemistry at UCSB, and one of the program’s principal investigators, along with Joel Rothman, a professor of molecular, cellular and developmental biology The program’s impact will be huge, she said, because it exclusively supports undergraduates and their research across the sciences and engineering.

Rothman added, “With this generous support from the Beckman Foundation, we will be able to attract truly exceptional undergraduates into the research environment at UCSB. The program will draw students into the thrilling adventures that come from making groundbreaking discoveries and advancing our knowledge of the natural world.”

Funded by the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, the three-year program provides scholarships of up to $21,000 to two outstanding students each year, stretching from one summer to the next, starting this year. The program also provides funds for participating mentors and labs.

“We’re excited to see this exceptional program grow with our 2022 class of undergraduate researchers,” said Anne Hultgren, executive director of the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation. “The applicant pool for this year was very competitive, and we are confident we’ve selected awardee institutions that will host exceptional programs with a diverse and talented cohort of scholars. We look forward to meeting each of them, learning more about their research projects, and welcoming them to our upcoming annual Beckman symposium.”

Once chosen, the UCSB Beckman Scholars will embark on an immersive experience that will support their high-impact research at a world-class research institution alongside top-caliber faculty mentors. They will have access to professional and scientific meetings, and professional development seminars. They also will gain opportunities to present their research at talks and prepare publications for peer-reviewed journals.

The program is administered by UCSB’s Center for Science and Engineering Partnerships (CSEP)  under the guidance of Samantha Davis, Arica Lubin and M. Ofelia Aguirre Paden. The CSEP team is already soliciting applications for its first cohort of scholars. The application deadline is Feb. 13, 2022. For more information about the Beckman Scholars Program and to apply, visit

Located in Irvine, the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation supports researchers and nonprofit research institutions in making the next generation of breakthroughs in chemistry and the life sciences.

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