Mission Statement

The mission of the Tetrad program is to transform a group of bright, motivated, and diverse trainees into independent, innovative, and rigorous leaders in academic science, biotechnology, and affiliated disciplines. Our mission requires balancing disciplinary specialization, which is essential for depth and rigor, with the flexibility to think broadly across disciplines, which drives scientific breakthroughs. Towards this goal, the Tetrad program provides training in the fundamental principles of Genetics, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry and the use of these principles to practice the scientific method across disciplines and with rigor. The approaches and concepts in these areas are applicable to nearly every aspect of modern biology. Therefore, we believe that by building a solid foundation in these core areas, we can best equip our trainees for the fast pace of biomedical discovery and the expanding landscape of science related career options. Thus, our training does not get obsolete with new technological innovations or changing biological paradigms, but instead contributes to driving such breakthroughs by empowering students to engage in curiosity driven research.

The emphasis on fundamental principles is complemented with exposure to cutting-edge biomedical findings and techniques to increase our students’ curiosity and foster their ability to tackle questions of broad significance. Our mission also requires training in essential professional skills, such as effective and accurate communication of science, an ability to work in diverse teams and an ability to identify a productive career path. Therefore, training activities such as proposal writing courses and career development workshops are woven throughout the program. Finally, our mission requires that our efforts to diversify the biomedical workforce do not rely simply on increased recruitment of underrepresented students, but that we also ensure their continued success. Therefore, activities such as training our program faculty to mentor across differences are essential program components.