To be eligible, a 2021 applicant must be:
1. At least 16 years of age by the start of the program, and
2. A rising junior or senior at an Arizona high school during the program.
If you will have a high school diploma from an Arizona school by the start of the program, you are eligible to apply to Helios Scholars at TGen but not the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy.
Application opens online.
Finalists notified via email.
Interview Day-Finalists must be available to attend an in-person interview at the TGen Headquarters on this date in order to be considered for the program.
Finalists notified of acceptance via email.
First day of the program.
Last day of program and reception.
Selection into the program consists of two rounds.
In the first round, applications are reviewed by community leaders in education and narrowed to the top 40. Reviewers will consider students' maturity, level of need, understanding of how the opportunity could impact their future, and genuine curiosity for biomedical sciences. Although the entire application is considered, the personal statement and recommendation letters are particularly useful for identifying the most exceptional students. No more than one student will be moved forward from each high school.
The 40 applicants selected in the first round are notified of their finalist status by email and receive an invitation to sign up for a half-hour slot on interview day. To be considered for the program, applicants must be available to attend the interview day in-person. Finalists will be interviewed by community leaders in education and a Bioscience Leadership Academy program manager. Not all finalists will be accepted; based on the interviews, 20 students will be selected to form a well-rounded cohort.
Before requesting additional information, please determine if your question is answered on any of the information pages.
Manager, Education and Outreach
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen)
445 N. Fifth St.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
Bioscience Leadership Academy students are expected to:
- Attend and actively participate in all program days
- Complete written and oral presentations on a bioscience topic
- Ask and evaluate key scientific questions
Bioscience Leadership Academy students will learn how to:
- Build a network of STEM professionals and STEM-motivated peers
- Apply collaborative work skills to scientific problems
- Identify appropriate professional etiquette and career development skills
- Recognize the norms of day to day work life in biomedical research settings
Tips for Applicants
Short Essays (250 words or less each)
In the application, you will be prompted to answer each of the following questions in 250 words or less:
- Tell us about your interests in biomedical research and how you have explored these interests in the past.
- Why do you want to attend the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy this summer? What do you hope to gain?
- How could the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy impact your future?
Before you submit your essays, ask someone you trust to proofread it and provide feedback. Bad writing or typos overshadow a good message and make your work appear sloppy.
Requesting and Submitting Recommendation Letters
Choose references who can discuss your character and provide a positive evaluation of your academic and professional aptitude and ambition. A good letter writer will provide new insight and perspective about you.
This might be a teacher, coach, counselor, religious leader, employer, or supervisor from an extracurricular activity, etc. At least one letter must come from a teacher (any subject). Letters from friends, parents, peers, relatives or TGen employees are not allowed.
Give your references enough time to write and submit your letters by 5:00 p.m. Arizona time on February 5, 2021. It is your responsibility to ensure your letters are submitted to TGen via the electronic submission process.
Once you save the name and contact information for a reference, a recommendation letter request is automatically generated via e-mail to each of your references, and notification is sent to you via email. The request e-mail contains instructions for submitting a letter electronically through a unique link that will attach their letter to your application. If your reference does not receive the e-mail, you have the option of resending it. Simply log back into your account, view your application and click the "Resend Request" button. You can also change a reference person or contact the same way. In addition, please have them add [email protected] and the IP address of 18.104.22.168 to their whitelist. It is your responsibility to notify your references of this process. TGen does not contact your references until you have submitted your final application.
Tips for References
If you have been asked to write a recommendation letter for a student applying to TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy, please review the following information.
What is TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy?
TGen's Bioscience Leadership Academy is a two-week bioscience program serving 20 Arizona high school students every summer. The intensive education and leadership program focuses on elevating students' understanding of the biosciences and precision medicine.
TGen scientists and staff share their research expertise and expose students to technical skill basics, lab shadowing, clinical trials, bioethics, experimental design, clinical application of genomic medicine and the translational process, a diversity of careers, and topics in neurological disease, cancer, diabetes and infectious disease.
The program also includes a leadership component focused on STEM professional skills such as science communication, public speaking, interdisciplinary and collaborative workplace skills, and networking.
What should I include in the recommendation letter?
Please tell us how you know the student and why you think they are a strong and deserving candidate for this leadership program. We value your insight regarding the student's academic ability, initiative, achievements, potential for success, dependability, character/habits of mind and professionalism. Specific anecdotes and examples from your experience with the student are much more valuable than generic praise and template letters. The ideal recommendation letter provides a realistic overview of the student's personal qualities, competencies and aptitude from your unique perspective.
How do I submit the recommendation letter?
When a student submits their final application, a recommendation request e-mail is automatically generated to you at the e-mail address provided by the student. The e-mail contains instructions and a unique web link to submit the text of the letter and automatically link it to their application. Letters are not accepted by mail or e-mail and are due by the application closing date: 5:00 p.m. Arizona time on February 5, 2021. Please check your junk mail folder for misdirected e-mail. If is the e-mail does not come through, the student can re-send it through their TGen account. In addition, please add [email protected] and the IP address of 22.214.171.124 to your whitelist.
To avoid losing your work due to session timeouts, please consider editing your letter in a word processing program on your own system before submitting the text on this website. Keep in mind that you will need to use plain text.
If you have questions or any difficulty, contact Kristen Kaus at [email protected].
I am graduating from high school this year. Am I still eligible?
You must be a current student who will be enrolled at a high school during the next academic year. For example, a student graduating from high school in Spring 2021 who will enroll in college in Fall 2021 is not eligible for the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy but is eligible to apply to Helios Scholars at TGen.
Is attendance mandatory?
Yes. To be eligible for the scholarship, all participants must attend the entire 10-day program.
If I have participated in the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy before, may I apply again?
No student may participate in the program more than once.
How do I submit my application?
The application is electronic. Mailed or e-mailed copies of any part of the application will not be accepted. Please do not have your transcripts or resume mailed to TGen.
For information on recommendation letter submission, please refer to the Tips for Applicants and Tips for References pages.
Are the letters of recommendation also due by the application deadline?
Yes! Recommendation letters must be received by the time the application closes. It is up to the applicant to ensure references submit letters before the deadline. Mailed copies or e-mail attachments will not be accepted in lieu of the electronic submission process outlined in the application instructions. The 2021 deadline is 5:00 p.m. Arizona time on February 5, 2021.
How will I be notified of the decision on my application?
All applicants will receive final notification by email.
What should I write about in my personal statement?
Please refer to the Tips for Applicants page for detailed suggestions.
What tips and suggestions do you have for references and letters of recommendation?
One recommendation letter must come from a teacher or professor (any subject). The second letter can come from a teacher, coach, counselor, religious leader, employer, or supervisor from an extracurricular activity, etc. Letters should not come from friends, parents, peers, relatives or TGen employees. For tips on choosing references, please refer to the Tips for Applicants page.
How does the selection process work?
Please refer to the Selection Process page.
Will all candidates be interviewed?
No. Only those top 40 students selected during the first round will receive an interview. All applicants will receive email notification of their status, whether selected or not.
I would like feedback on my application to make myself more competitive for next year. Who can I talk to about this?
We are not able to provide application feedback. All materials submitted by the applicant and their references and all materials generated during the review process (i.e. committee and reviewer notes, etc.) become the confidential property of TGen.
What does a typical day look like?
Most days at the TGen Bioscience Leadership Academy will run from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. There may be some assignments and readings required outside these hours that can be completed on participants' own time or at TGen between 3:00 and 4:00 pm.
The curriculum is developed by TGen scientists and program managers sharing their expertise to create experiential learning activities. Events will include shadowing experiences, journal clubs, tours of laboratory and medical facilities, and professional development training sessions.
How much scholarship money does the program pay?
Each graduate of the program will receive a $1,000 scholarship.
Where does the program take place?
Program days will always start and end at the TGen Headquarters in downtown Phoenix.
Does TGen provide housing or housing assistance to interns?
No. Neither housing nor housing assistance is provided. All interns must secure their own housing.
Does TGen provide transportation to and from the program?
No. Successful candidates are required to arrange their own transportation. TGen does provide free parking or bus/light rail passes.
All other questions may be directed to Kristen Kaus by e-mail at [email protected].
Applications are now closed.