New program attracts top science students

PULLMAN – The College of Sciences at WSU is taking applications from top high school seniors for a new program called STARS (Students Targeted toward Advanced Research Studies).
“This is an exciting program created for the best science students in Washington who are interested in a research career in the molecular biosciences,” said Associate Dean of Sciences Mary Sanchez Lanier.  “I have been delighted with the response to our program so far.  We have many highly talented students in the state, and these students are interested in working with internationally recognized faculty at WSU both early in their studies and into their graduate program.”

The new program promises undergraduates interested in molecular biosciences the opportunity to participate in laboratory research under the direction of faculty starting in their freshman year. The opportunity for face to face research instruction, coupled with paid summer research work each year and scholarships throughout a student’s undergraduate career has attracted applicants from WSU’s top-tier of admitted students for the fall.

The program is designed for students who want to become research scientists in subjects like biochemistry and genetics. Students in the STARS program will transition to taking graduate courses in their senior year at WSU and become graduate students as they earn their bachelor’s degrees. STARS students can then earn a doctorate in as little as seven years after graduating from high school, a two to four year time-savings compared to the education of many young scientists.

“It’s a fast-track program for those with good fundamentals and a serious work ethic,” Sanchez Lanier said.

Entering freshmen at WSU who apply to STARS must be admitted students at the university. They also need an excellent high school GPA, demonstrated preparation in high school courses for university-level math and science and a clear interest in pursuing a doctoral degree at WSU in molecular biosciences, Sanchez Lanier said.

More information about the program is available at

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