Eligibility & Membership Benefits

Why should you join BTP?

2015_HackUMass_js_MG_0548 copyThe Biotechnology Training Program recruits matriculated predoctoral students from BPT training faculty labs within five degree-granting programs (Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, Polymer Science & Engineering, Veterinary & Animal Sciences, Molecular & Cellular Biology). Once you apply and are accepted into the BTP program, you can take full advantage of all the scholarly advantages BTP has to offer!

Students at any point in their Ph.D. program and from any department or any lab may participate in the BTP Program as members. Membership in the BTP entitles you to participation in all BTP events, and makes you eligible for travel fellowships.*

Students in the program are offered a scholarly and social infrastructure that helps facilitate new and strengthen existing interdisciplinary networks at UMass and beyond! Students are given administrative support, a semester long seminar series to help introduce them to new ideas and cutting edge technology, an education in fundamentals of quantitative biotechnology, lab modules dedicated to biotech training, and full access to all the resources BTP has to offer.

What are the requirements for membership?

Students in the BTP program must complete the Curriculum in order to obtain the BTP certificate at the end of their doctorate. Although BTP is a non degree granting program, there are many opportunities throughout the course of the curriculum to gain a comprehensive understanding of the biotechnology field. Typically, most of the courses required to be a member/complete BTP are in a students degree plan so although there are external requirements outside of the degree, it is not much more work then students are already conducting.

Applications for membership

Students who want to join the program are welcome to apply at any time, by submitting the application

Does BTP fund students that are being trained?

Traineeships will typically be awarded to students to support their 2nd and 3rd years of study. Students will complete a prescribed curriculum over two years and may elect to obtain a graduate certificate in Cellular Engineering. All traineeship-supported students will complete an industrial internship, typically of 10-15 weeks duration.

BTP offers two ways to become funded:

NIH Supported Traineeship – The NIH sponsors pre-doctoral training programs in areas of national need. Recently the NIH established a program targeting the Chemistry-Biology Interface with the intent of training chemists able to speak freely with biologists and vice versa. This was prompted by the growing importance of this area in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, where such communication is increasingly essential. Since NIH training programs are recognized world wide, membership in the BTP Program demonstrates to future employers, that a student has designed his or her training at UMass to match this national need.

US citizens are eligible for NIH-supported traineeships

UMass Supported Fellowship – UMass is dedicated to helping their students gain an education in an environment in which they can be paid!  UMass Traineeships will support students in the spring semester for two consecutive years.

All students from BTP labs are eligible for UMass-supported traineeships.

How do I become a funded trainee?

BTP Training faculty can nominate BTP Program Members for a funded Traineeship. US citizens and permanent residents are eligible for NIH-funded Traineeships; additional UMass-funded Fellowships are also available. Funded trainee selection criteria include past performance (undergraduate institution and GPA, GRE scores), progress in the PhD program (grades and research productivity), and commitment to the BTP Program. Due to the limited number of available traineeships, selection is highly competitive.

Trainee nominations are due annually July 24, for Traineeships that typically begin in October. Interested students should join BTP as soon as possible and start following the curriculum. Current BTP Program Members should be sure to submit their annual BTP status report by December 1 every year.

*Becoming a member of the BTP is required to be eligible for a traineeship. The application process for a BTP traineeship is different from the membership process and is detailed here.