The Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation is an independent, non-profit Foundation originally established in September 1977 for the purpose of supporting basic scientific research, primarily in the fields of chemistry, biochemistry and medicine. In 1997, the Beckman Foundation initiated the Beckman Scholars Program, which recognizes outstanding undergraduate students in chemistry, biochemistry, biological and medical sciences research at select universities and colleges throughout the United States. UC Davis held a Beckman Scholar’s Program from 2012-2015 and was selected as one of 12 universities to receive the prestigious 2016-2019 Beckman Scholar's Program Award. 

Scholars Program

The purpose of the Beckman Scholars Program is to help stimulate, encourage and support research activities by exceptionally talented, full-timed undergraduate students who have the potential to be outstanding leaders of the next generation of researchers. The scholars can choose to work with any of the 14 faculty mentors. These research activities shall be centered on research at the interface of chemistry, engineering and the biological and medical sciences.  Additionally, the research projects will have a clear application to a global and/or medical health need. 

The research will be performed part-time (ten hours per week) during one academic year and full-time over two summers, immediately before and after the academic year research experience. Scholars must be available and commit to the entire time period to be eligible to receive an award. Once selected to be a Beckman Scholar, a student will retain the funding as long as he/she continues to excel academically, is in good academic standing, and his/her research work shows satisfactory progress.

Total award per student is $21,000 for stipend and expenses as shown below.  Each matched faculty mentor will receive an additional $5,000 stipend for travel, supplies, and fees related to the scholar’s research. 

Summer 1
Academic Year
Summer 2
Travel and Supplies
Faculty Mentor
Travel, supplies, fees related to scholar's research
= $5,000

Program Information

  • To be eligible for consideration students must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident, a major in science or engineering, minimum GPA of 3.5, must continue to be an enrolled undergraduate through at least Spring quarter 2019, and be available to participate as researchers as follows: Full-time Summer 2018; Part-time during Academic year 2018-19; Full-time Summer 2019. Note: students graduating Spring 2019 are eligible to apply as long as they are committed to full-time participation in Summer 2019, immediately following graduation.
  • Please note that the Beckman Scholars program is currently in a transition year with the next application deadline to be determined. Please reference the below for standard application guidelines for the program.

         -Applications must include the items listed below.  Name your pdf file: "Lastname_FirstnameBeckman.pdf".  Incorrectly named files will not be accepted.

         -Cover letter indicating preferred faculty mentor(s)


         -Letter of recommendation from former supervisor who can comment on the student's aptitude and promise for a career in research

         -Writing sample (single spaced, minimum 11 pt font): Two-page summary of a prior research or lab experience in the form of an extended abstract.

    You may talk to a faculty mentor to inquire about working in their laboratory, but prior selection of a mentor is not a requirement for application. If you do not have a pre-arranged mentor, please list your top 3 choices for faculty mentors in your cover letter.

    Four to five top applicants will be selected for personal interviews where they will be asked to comment on their future career plans and give 5-10 minute presentations on a past research topic or on the proposed research. No late applications will be accepted.

  • The Beckman Scholars Program is strictly limited to the following Mentors. Each Mentor has specified their research area as listed below, along with a global/medical health application in which the selected Scholar’s research will address.  Applicants should choose their preferred Mentor from the list below. A rank ordered list of up to 3 potential Mentors should be provided in the cover letter.