Agents of Change (AoC) Merck Fellows Program

Updates (Fall 2023)

  • Budget constraints  

  • Award amount update for grad - $7K 

  • Open date and deadline update 

  • Deadline change: only one deadline

  • Competitive renewals

  • Nominations option phased out

  • 5 AoC Fellowship Award Spots available for Fall 2023 (this includes renewals)

Upcoming Due Dates

Only one deadline - Oct 16 

  • Due to budget constraints in the 2023-2024 school year, we will only have one deadline this term. 

  • Fellows begin project/research with the intention to complete it by the end of the semester over a 4-month period 

  • Fellow is responsible for completing all requirements for the term they have applied for before being eligible to apply for renewal  

Goals of the AoC Fellows Program

  • Provide 4 months of funding for students who are engaged in transformative biomedical research projects that impact community health
  • Provide professional development for students in biomedical sciences who are engaged in radical social justice work
  • Connect students to a wider network of professionals and students working to support social justice in biomedical science

How will the AoC Fellows program benefit me in my career?

  • Support your academic and career trajectory in the biomedical field (e.g. Master’s, Ph.D., MD/Ph.D., MD, MPH)
  • Supply financial support for academic and professional development activities
  • Provide networking, peer mentoring, and community building
  • Stipend award
    • $7K for Grad and Post Bac Fellows 

    • $5K for Undergraduate Fellows  

Fellow Program Requirements and Expectations 

  • Participate in one AOC workshop a semester

  • Complete 4 reflections through iLearn  

  • Culminating report back project (ie. final reflections, social media post) 


  • Currently enrolled as an undergraduate or master’s student at SFSU in a biomedical major or recently graduated from SFSU within 1 year.
  • Intent to pursue graduate or professional school within 1-2 years
  • Interested in biomedical research relevant to community health
  • Committed to social justice through the use of science
  • Currently involved in supporting community-engaged biomedical research. 


  • Fellows who complete all the term requirements and expectations will be eligible to apply for renewal for 1yr or 3 terms total.  

  • Renewals will be competitive due to budget constraints and are not guaranteed.  

  • To renew, go to this page.

How to Apply

1. Application

There are TWO ways to apply:

  1. Student Application- Students who are already working on a community-engaged biomedical research/project with a UCSF or SF State faculty member can apply below.

  2. AoC Fellows-Match students who find an opportunity through our SF BUILD Open Projects can apply using the same link below. Faculty letters for student applications will be accepted up to one week after deadlines listed above. Letters received after this period will be pushed to the next cycle.