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State University of New York Upstate Medical University

  • Syracuse, NY
  • Public
  • Urban
  • 61%39%
    student ratio
  • 1,145
    total students
  • Not Reported
    in-state tuition | out-of-state tuition


The College of Graduate Studies at SUNY Upstate Medical University

The College of Graduate Studies at State University of New York (SUNY) Upstate Medical University offers master degree, Ph.D., and M.D./Ph.D. programs in the biomedical sciences. Graduate students enjoy outstanding research, well-funded labs, tuition waivers and competitive stipends, and an unprecedented student/faculty member ratio of nearly 1-to-1.

Diverse Focus Areas

The College of Graduate Studies conducts both basic and clinical research in the areas of infectious disease, molecular genetics, epigenetics, genomics, neuroscience, structural biology, and behavior disorders. Research at the college focuses on the translation of retinal basic research into practical treatments for blinding diseases; neural injury to the lower spinal cord and repair; degenerative changes in chronic illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes; cancer research; medically-relevant protein and nucleic acid-protein complexes to treat cancer and other diseases; the use of equipment, animal-model development, and field work to study infectious diseases; and methods to promote global health.

SUNY Upstate Medical University Biomedical Graduate Degrees

First-year students complete three research rotations and are allowed to take up to a full year before choosing their degree program and mentor. Students also receive formal grant training and career development through journal clubs, seminars and other offerings. Teacher opportunities are available, but not required.

The College of Graduate Studies offers an M.S. or a Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology degree program; an M.S. in Anatomy and a Ph.D. in Anatomy and Cell Biology degree program; a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology degree program; an M.S. and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology degree program; a Ph.D. in Neuroscience degree program; and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Physiology degree program.

The Master of Science Timeline

Most master's degree students finish their programs within 2 to 3 years. Unlike Ph.D. students, master's degree students choose a degree program right from the start. Master's students complete a thesis and receive training in the latest research techniques. They pay tuition and do not receive a stipend.

The Ph.D. Timeline

During their first years of study, students take both core and elective coursework in biomedical studies. They participate in a Journal Club where they analyze papers and give oral presentations, and take part in other initiatives designed to support their academic progress and career path. After three lab rotations, they select degree programs.

During their second years, students begin their dissertation research and complete courses in grant writing and responsible conduct of scientific research. They pass qualifying exams at the end of their second years. Most students complete their entire programs within 5 to 6 years.

SUNY Upstate Medical University M.D./Ph.D. Program

SUNY Upstate Medical University offers a 7-year M.D./Ph.D. degree program. Students complete the first 2 years of the traditional program for medical students. During the summers before, during, and after these 2 years, students complete 3 lab rotations. During their 3rd years, students begin the first of 3 years of dissertation research. In their 6th and 7th years in the program, they complete the final 2 years of medical school. Students in the program receive tuition waivers and generous stipends during all 7 years.

The Joint Neuroscience Program

Graduate students may also participate in a joint Ph.D. degree program in neuroscience established by SUNY Upstate Medical University and Syracuse University. Students who complete their 3 lab rotations may pursue their dissertation research at either institute.

The Structural Biology (SB3) Program

Students may also complete Ph.D. degrees in "Structural Biology," "Biochemistry," and "Biophysics" (SB3) through a joint program offered by SUNY Upstate Medical University, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, and Syracuse University. All three universities are neighbors within walking distance.

Travel Perks

Students wishing to attend prestigious conferences around the world may travel at no cost to themselves to present their research. Students have recently traveled to conferences in Cold Springs Harbor, Princeton, Montreal, San Francisco, Woods Hole, Atlanta, Cambridge, Germany, and the Netherlands.

Student Life in Syracuse

SUNY Upstate Medical University is located Syracuse, New York, a medium-sized, affordable college town with abundant restaurants, shops, theaters, libraries, and sports. SUNY Upstate is home to dozens of student clubs and intramural sports teams.

Students venturing outside the city can visit the lakes, mountains, parks, ski slopes, golf courses, and beaches surrounding Syracuse.

The SUNY System -- A Top Research Institution

State University of New York Upstate Medical University is part of the SUNY system, the largest university system in the world and one of the top 10 U.S. institutions in the procurement of patents each year.

Location & Contact

State University of New York Upstate Medical University

766 Irving Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13210-2334
United States

Dr. Mark Schmitt

Dean, College of Graduate Studies

Phone: 315-464-4538

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Colleges, Departments, and Programs

Student Body

  • Gender
    • Total Graduate Students1145
    • Female Percentage61%
    • Male Percentage39%
  • Participation
    • Total Graduate Students1145
    • Part-time Percentage18%
    • Full-time Percentage82%
  • Ethnicity
    • Hispanic / LatinoNot Reported
    • Black / African AmericanNot Reported
    • White / CaucasianNot Reported
    • American Indian / Alaskan NativeNot Reported
    • AsianNot Reported
    • Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific IslanderNot Reported
    • Two or more racesNot Reported
    • UnknownNot Reported




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