You are here:

The ACCESS Program for Women in Science & Mathematics

The ACCESS Program for Women in Science & Mathematics is a scholarship award and first year experience for incoming fresh-women with an interest in the sciences of math, biology, chemistry or physics. All women are invited to apply. Preference is given to traditionally underserved students.

The ACCESS Program was established in 1991 and has helped nearly 700 women launch their undergraduate science education. 


Why you should apply:


  • a cohort of lasting friendships and develop important mentor connections
  • a summer living-learning experience, where you will take an interdisciplinary science course taught by faculty from the College of Science’s four departments- Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics
  • an opportunity to work in a research laboratory, that aligns with your scientific interests, during spring semester of your freshman year.
  • receive a scholarship experience valued at nearly 5K. Part of this scholarship, is a monetary award of nearly $3,500.00 which you can use to cover tuition, books and other costs associated with your undergraduate education

Summer Semester (after graduating from high school)

  • ACCESS Integrated Science, a three credit-hour course.
    A broadly defined issue unifies this interdisciplinary course which is taught by faculty from each of the College of Science’s four departments—Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Physics & Astronomy. The 7-week course culminates in a capstone summit, where students consider how science can inform policies and/or drive new innovations to address the issues we face today.   
  • Wednesday lunch discussions.
    ACCESS students connect with faculty, learn about research in the College of Science, and discover other unique programs offered at the University of Utah during small group lunch meetings.
  • Science activities offer ACCESS students a more intimate look at research, innovations and applications in the sciences. Past activities have included a star party at the campus observatory, a physics show, visits to research laboratories and equipment demonstrations in state of the art biological imaging facilities.
  • ACCESS alumni mentors (undergraduates in the College of Science) organize socials and provide group and personalized support to each new cohort of students.
  • Residential housing in the Marriott Honors Community.
    A residential living and learning experience encourages full participation during the summer semester and is key to helping students build friendships, and study groups across the ACCESS cohort.
  • ACCESS summer barbeque, an alumni reunion and opportunity for the newest members of ACCESS to build a network of connections.


Fall Semester: 

  • During the Fall semester students meet with the ACCESS Program Director to discuss their scientific interests, educational and career goals. This information is used to identify a laboratory placement for spring semester. Mentorship and networking continues as a key element in the ACCESS Program experience.

Spring Semester: 

  • Students begin to appreciate the scientific process while working in a research lab.
  • Student research is showcased during a year-end, celebratory, ACCESS symposium. Faculty and graduate students, from across the College of Science, as well as family and friends, are invited to attend this event.

Research Poster Session

Contact Janae Bird at 801-581-6958 or for more information. 

For Students, Parents, and Teachers: 

History of ACCESS

How Do I Get In?

Support the ACCESS Program:

Our Sponsors

How To Help

More Information


Tanya Vickers
ACCESS Program Director
College of Science
1430 Presidents Circle RM 220
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
(801) 581-6958

Janae Bird
ACCESS Program Coordinator
College of Science
1430 Presidents Circle RM 220
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
(801) 581-6958

Daureen Nesdill MS, MLIS
ACCESS Librarian
Marriott Library
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
(801) 585-5975



Last Updated: 10/12/17