GAIN - Genentech- Foundation sponsored Academic Inspiration Network

GAIN is currently funded for years 2021, 2022, 2023, and 2024. Applications for each year will be due in the fall/winter beforehand and exact details will be listed on this site. Postdocs may apply for more than one year.

The Genentech-Foundation sponsored Academic Inspiration Network (GAIN) supports UCSC postdocs who aim to broaden their mentoring experience.

For four months, selected GAIN Postdoctoral Fellows will work with CSUMB faculty to advise CSUMB undergraduate students during spring semester classes (2 months) and to introduce students to laboratory research for 2 months during the summer.

Postdoc application: To apply, please send a brief (max. 1 page) personal statement about your motivation to participate in this program. Please also briefly state what type of research the CSUMB students would participate in during the summer. Please have your advisor also send a brief email to the program administration ( or confirming their consent to your participation in this program. Each of the 4 years we can accept 3 postdocs into the program. Selection will be based on your personal statement. Postdocs can apply for multiple years if they are interested.

Funding details: GAIN will pay $1,147/month toward three postdocs’ salaries* (and pro-rated benefits) for 4 months. In summer 2021, GAIN will supply $600 per CSUMB student towards laboratory material and undergraduate students will receive a 50% time stipend ($1,250/month & pro-rated benefits).

*If salary support is not compatible with the postdoc's current funding, GAIN funds may be used for the postdoc's other expenses, such as research supplies, instead.

Program outline: Each UCSC postdoc will mentor four undergraduate students during the CSUMB spring semester (late January to late March) and two of those students during 2 months of summer research. CSUMB professors will work with the postdocs to optimize student mentoring before and during the mentoring period. The postdoc's time commitment is estimated to be 10 hours/week during that time.

During the 2021 spring semester, each postdoc and their students will meet weekly as a group (by phone or Zoom). Postdocs will also give students the opportunity to meet privately if individual questions arise or if a student has scheduling conflicts. GAIN postdocs will engage their mentees in conversations about 1) class material, 2) how the class material relates to planned summer research projects, and 3) questions relating to graduate school, career planning, and personal experiences in academia.

During the 2021 summer we anticipate that the postdoc will use a phone or computer to remotely illustrate some of their laboratory work during the week and (if UCSC restrictions allow) host the undergraduate student on occasional week- or weekend days to perform some techniques in person. In the 2021 summer, undergraduate students will spend 50% on understanding and (remotely) participating in the research project.

CSUMB students: CSUMB students that will be selected as mentees for the 2021 cohort will largely be those who are typically underrepresented in STEM research and also students who are especially affected by Covid-19 triggered remote learning, for example by limited access to technology, family obligations, or other issues. In addition to CSUMB student stipends, GAIN funds the purchase of computer tablets and mobile data plans for those CUSMB students who experience technical limitations in communicating with their professors and mentors.

Contact: For further questions or to apply, please send an email to the IBSC (

Mentor training: We encourage all postdocs, especially those who are interested in joining GAIN in later years, to participate in the new 5-day CITL summer workshop on mentoring skills for postdocs (dates and detail will be posted soon).