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Quick Facts & Stats

Vanderbilt’s Biomedical Research community blends scientific excellence with a friendly, engaging, and supportive environment. Here, discovery and collaboration are not at odds with each other, but rather embody our unparalleled approach to innovation. Combined with a broad program curriculum in vibrant Nashville, TN, our research community is uniquely situated to provide graduate students with an education and training that will propel them as scientific leaders!

Renowned Research


2019 NIH funding
VU School of Medicine


VU School of Medicine
2019 US News & World


AAAS Fellows


Million NIH grants


Research Centers

Vanderbilt University and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center have built a strong reputation as leaders in medical research and patient care throughout the nation over the course of its 150-year history. With 400 laboratories conducting cutting-edge research, Vanderbilt attracts the best and brightest researchers from all over the world. Reflecting our focus on high-quality research, Vanderbilt recently ranked first in the nation in the five-year growth rate of NIH-sponsored funding. The research activities of faculty affiliated with graduate programs range from fundamental basic science to patient-oriented clinical studies. The extensive interchange of scientific information, techniques, and equipment between investigators reflects the interdisciplinary nature and collaborative spirit of the scientific endeavor at Vanderbilt, which contributes to our strong research program.

Supportive Environment


$34,000 Stipend, Health Insurance, Tuition covered


Predoctoral NIH
Training Grants


Students secure Individual national funding


Underrepresented in Science

Support is intentional at Vanderbilt. This includes support for our trainees, encompassing many aspects of training, from providing a collaborative research environment to nationally-leading career development and student support. The Office of Biomedical Research Education and Training was established in 1999 to aid and coordinate graduate education including the recruitment, admissions, and training processes for the biomedical sciences. Included in the BRET office are the Office of Career Development’s ASPIRE program initially funded by an NIH BEST grant. The philosophy of the BRET Office of Career Development ASPIRE Program is that career planning should begin on Day 1 of predoctoral or postdoctoral training at Vanderbilt through seminars and modules to generate diverse professional development training opportunities. The ASPIRE program also provides experiential learning opportunities through a robust internship program and strong employer relations. Students are further supported through the NIH funded, Initiative for Maximizing Student Diversity, which exists to increase the number of PhDs awarded to graduate students in biomedical research who are underrepresented in science.
Finally, students are supported through extensive access to mental and physical health and wellness programs as well as access to counseling services and a graduate Life Coach. Providing well-rounded training and professional development contributes to the success of our students to graduation and beyond, as evidenced by diverse career outcomes.

Flexible Program

Umbrella admissions IGP & QCB programs


Affiliated Research Laboratories


4, 8-week rotations


Time to Degree

Vanderbilt has two complementary umbrella programs aimed at fostering diverse, creative, and analytical thinkers, geared to tackle the quickly evolving world of research and technology.
The Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in the Biological and Biomedical Sciences is a leading integrative biomedical graduate program, recruiting students with a strong biological background to pursue biomedical research. As a union between 11 participating programs, the IGP provides a strong foundational point for completing a biomedical dissertation. During the fall semester, IGP students take a course entitled Bioregulation aimed to teach the fundamental concepts of cell and molecular biology that underpin biological and biomedical research. As a complement to this didactic course in the fall, students meet in small groups (FOCUS groups) to learn how to read and critically evaluate the primary literature. In the spring semester, course specialization begins by enrollment in a variety of elective courses and modules. Throughout the first year, IGP students attend weekly small group mentoring sessions (IMPACT groups) to discuss a wide range of issues concerning graduate education, career planning, and responsible conduct in research. During this first year, students also complete four research rotations in labs of their choosing, allowing exploration of a wide variety of training opportunities in the labs of hundreds of Vanderbilt research faculty. In May, students choose a preceptor and home program or department.

Vibrant Nashville, TN


Pro Sports Leagues (NFL, NHL, MLS)


NCAA Sports Conference


State Parks


#7 Best City 2019 Travel & Leisure

Nashville, home to Vanderbilt University and more than one million residents, is a metropolitan city that proudly exudes all of the charm and hospitality expected from a Southern capital. The city offers the advantages of major U.S. cities, but holds unique distinction in being named one of the friendliest cities in America several years in a row. The downtown area and historic riverfront district, less than two miles from the Vanderbilt campus, boasts a lively night life with a plethora of restaurants, coffee houses, and music venues. The Tennessee Performing Arts Center, outdoor theaters and parks, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, and the Schermerhorn Symphony Hall provide the city with a full range of outstanding cultural entertainment. Many students live within walking distance to campus as Vanderbilt is perfectly situated between the downtown and residential divide of the city.