Honors College and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

We want you to not just feel welcome at UAF — we want you to feel you belong here. We are committed to fostering a community in which everyone feels a genuine sense of acceptance. The UAF Honors College acknowledges historical boundaries and blindspots in making our community of scholars more inclusive for all students.

On this page, you will learn more about our current and future diversity and inclusion initiatives. We work to update this page with resources for and communicate opportunities available at UAF for students, staff, and faculty to learn more on issues of diversity and inclusion.  

The Honors College takes an active approach to ensure that the College closely mirrors the University of Alaska Fairbanks' commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. The phrase inclusive excellence is a great way to describe the value we hold true. A philosophy of inclusive excellence means that we think about issues of equity and inclusion in everything that we do. Whatever stake or role you have in the Honors College, we invite you to join us in our commitment to and role-modeling of inclusive excellence.

  • We are committed to a diverse pipeline of students as shown by
    • Increasing access to the Honors College for students traditionally underrepresented
    • Providing equitable access to a wide range of opportunities, including scholarship programs such as U-RISE Alaska, Nanook Brotherhood 
    • Ensuring that all students experience authentic development in their college career
    • Working directly with high school pathway programs to create relationships for the recruitment of highly qualified students early

U-RISE Alaska Scholars

Undergraduate Research Initiative for Student Enhancement (URISE) program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks is a scholarship program funded by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) at the NIH. The goal of the URISE program is to increase the number of well-prepared underrepresented (UR) students who matriculate into high caliber Ph.D. or combined M.D.-Ph.D. programs in the biomedical sciences and eventually go on to research careers. This program addresses the need to reduce the disparity in the number of individuals from underrepresented backgrounds in biomedical research careers.

The long-term goal of this program at UAF is to prepare graduates to be leaders in biomedical research by improving their preparedness for Ph.D. programs. This program is specifically designed for sophomore who students who are interested in learning about research careers and in becoming academically prepared for them. During the scholarship, URISE scholars receive partial tuition and fees support as well as a generous monthly stipend. The URISE scholarship also cover in part the students' participation in research experiences in funded laboratories and/or at scientific conferences.



Students majoring in biology, biochemistry, chemistry, chemical engineering, mathematics, physics, and psychology are eligible to apply for the U-RISE Alaska program. Each year interested students will apply during the spring semester of their sophomore year. The URISE Program Steering Committee will then select applicants to participate in the program based on the criteria below:

  1. Strong commitment to matriculation into either a PhD or MD/PhD program in biomedical sciences upon completion of the Bachelor degree and strong commitment to a research career in biomedical sciences.
  2. U.S. citizen, noncitizen national or permanent resident.
  3. Full-time sophomore with selected major
  4. Overall GPA of at least 3.0
  5. Submission of two letters of recommendation