The UC LEADS Program is one of the most prestigious fellowships awarded by the University of California system. This program provides up to nine UCLA upper-division undergraduate students in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics with educational experiences that prepare them to assume positions of leadership in academia, industry, government, and public service following the completion of a doctoral degree, preferably at the University of California.

Each UC LEADS Scholar is provided with resources over the two-year period to:

  • Receive funding to conduct research with the guidance of a faculty mentor during the academic year
  • Participate in two summer research programs at UCLA and another UC campus
  • Learn about research and graduate study opportunities other UC campuses
  • Attend and present research at the Annual UC LEADS Research & Leadership Symposium
  • Annually attend a National Conference to present research findings
  • Participate quarterly in journal club and leadership training seminars
  • Participate in professional development seminars and workshops
  • Attend quarterly meetings with the Deans of Graduate Division
  • Participate in quarterly group social activities


To be eligible for selection, applicants must be:

  • A Physical Sciences or Engineering major 
  • Educationally and/or economically disadvantaged
  • Interested in research and have identified a research lab
  • Seasoned UC sophomores or rising junior standing. Since this is a two-year program, UC LEADS scholars will need to be available to spend one summer performing research at their home campus and then a second summer performing research at another UC campus.
  • Intending to pursue a PhD in a STEM field
  • In good academic standing in undergraduate degree program with a minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Able to demonstrate potential for success in a graduate program
  • Citizens or permanent residents of the United States or AB540 students

To learn more or apply, visit