Collaboration & Mentorship

Research Exchange

Face-to-face interaction between scientists at any of our participating institutions

Graduate and postdoctoral scholars can receive funding to visit any of the nine university partners for several weeks to learn new research techniques, find mentors, start new research collaborations and hear about postdoc opportunities.

Program Overview

For the first time, nine of the nation’s most prominent universities are engaging in joint mentorship, scientific collaboration, career development and guidance of advanced PhD students and postdoctoral fellows.

The goal of the Research Exchange is to increase the advancement of diverse PhD students and postdoctoral fellows from participating top tier institutions into the most competitive research and teaching careers. To achieve this, we have established the Research Exchange. Through this program, the alliance will sponsor a student or postdoctoral fellow’s visit with a faculty member or research scientist for a short period to learn new techniques, engage in collaborative discussion for innovative problem solving and face-to-face interaction between scientists at any of our participating institutions.

The Research Exchange will support a visit to a research group at any of the partner institutions. Visits may last approximately one week. The goals of the program are to promote cross-institutional exchange between students and faculty across the alliance institutions, aid students in their search for postdoctoral mentors, help researchers identify future collaborators, and welcome students into the broader scientific network.

Apply to be matched with a researcher in your area of research at any of the participating Institutions (Berkeley, Caltech, Stanford, UCLA, University of Michigan, Harvard University, University of Texas at Austin, and University of Washington) by completing and submitting the request below. Applications are accepted and reviewed throughout the year. Requests should be aimed for scheduling your visit within 1-6 months from your application submission.

2023 Application Cycle:

  • Application Cycle Open: Now


Ph.D. graduate students or postdocs from the nine participating institutions who are in the Mathematical, Physical, and Environmental Sciences and Engineering (MPESE) fields, belong to an underrepresented minority group (African American, Chicano/Latino, Native American/Alaskan Native or Pacific Islander) and are US citizens or Permanent Residents are eligible for NSF-AGEP funded visits. If you are a student or postdoc at one of the nine participating institutions but do not meet the other NSF-AGEP eligibility criteria and wish to participate, please contact your institution in the Research Exchange.

Application for Research Exchange.

Please read the participant guide.

Look over the participant checklist.

Want to receive email updates for Research Exchange ?

Program Support

The Research University Alliance is a NSF Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP).

NSF-AGEP supports strategic alliances of institutions and organizations to develop, implement, and study innovative evidence-based models and standards for STEM graduate education, postdoctoral training, and academic STEM career preparation that eliminate or mitigate negative factors and promote positive practices for URMs.

Building over time

Research Exchange Growth

The California Alliance Caltech, Stanford University, UC Berkeley, and UCLA form the California Alliance.
California Alliance Inaugural Retreat The California Alliance hosts the first national research conference for the Alliances for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP)at Stanford University in Spring 2014.
Research Exchange is Created The California Alliance develops a national Research Exchange program.
The Research University Alliance (RUA) is Officially Launched Nine universities partner together to create the the Research University Alliance. Alliance universities include Caltech, Georgia Tech, Harvard University, UC Berkeley, UC Los Angeles, University of Michigan, Stanford University, University of Texas at Austin and University of Washington.
Research Exchange

Frequently Asked Questions

Before your Visit
How do I establish a Research Exchange connection?

Students interested in the Research Exchange first should apply to be matched with a researcher in their area of research at any of the participating institutions by completing and submitting the request through the Research Exchange application portal.

Where can I apply to participate in a Research Exchange visit?

You can apply to for a Research Exchange by visiting the Research Exchange application portal.

When should I submit an application to participate in the Research Exchange?

Applications are received and reviewed throughout the year. For better efficiency, please submit your application 3 – 6 months before your desired visit dates.

How long does it take to determine if my application is accepted?

Allow 3 weeks for your home institution to determine eligibility.

Should I contact my preferred faculty member prior to completing and submitting my request to participate in the Research Exchange?

Prior to submitting a request, students and postdocs may find it convenient to contact the researcher themselves to gauge their availability and interest in hosting a visitor.

Will anyone else contact my preferred faculty on my behalf?

Once a request to participate is received by the Research Exchange, the host institution will contact the researcher(s) requested by the student or postdoc to begin the scheduling process.