PhD Programs

The Department of Biochemistry and Molecular & Cellular Biology (BMCB) offers two parallel Ph.D. programs in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and Cell Biology. Both programs have the same core course requirements, and students may tailor their electives to suit their individual goals. Students in either program may perform their thesis research in any of the departmental Ph.D. training laboratories; laboratory selection is based on rotations performed in the first year. Students with a background or particular interest in areas such as molecular mechanisms, proteomics or biophysics may opt for the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology program. Those who lean toward developmental or stem cell biology or other cellular processes may prefer the Cell Biology program.

Graduates of both programs have gone on to successful careers in academia, industry, medicine, law and finance. Please feel free to contact former and current students to learn more about the department as well as living, working and commuting in Washington, DC. You may also contact members of the faculty to learn more about their research interests.

The department accepts up to five Ph.D. students each year, all of whom are provided with a stipend, health insurance and full tuition scholarship (total direct and indirect compensation approximately $35,000 in fiscal 2010) with no teaching requirement. Students are also strongly encouraged to apply for independent fellowships from sources such as the National Institutes of HealthNational Science Foundation and Department of Defense. Occasionally students enter the Ph.D. program with funding from commercial or foreign governmental sources (e.g. CONACYT).

For more information on the admissions process, see our Admissions and Application Process pages. 

Program Contact 

Lucy Cherner, M.S.

Program Coordinator
237 Basic Science Building