The Master of Science in Translational Research and Applied Medicine

The new one-year Master of Science in Translational Research and Applied Medicine (M-TRAM) prepares emerging academic and industry leaders to successfully translate scientific discoveries and clinical applications into practical solutions that improve and save lives. Drawing on Stanford Medicine’s world-class expertise in medicine, technology, and business, M-TRAM is the only early translational program of its kind on the West Coast and one of only a few such one-year programs offered by a top-ranked U.S. university.

For more details about the program and information about how to apply, please visit the M-TRAM website.


Student Profile

M-TRAM is designed for individuals seeking to develop, implement, and / or lead the translation of research discoveries and clinical applications into biomedical innovations:  

  • » Physicians and medical students

  • » Recent college graduates

  • » Graduate students

  • » Academic research assistants

  • » Biotechnology professionals

  • » Business, legal, and medical professionals

Curriculum Highlights

M-TRAM’s rigorous interdisciplinary curriculum covers the translational landscape and the strategies to develop, test, and implement novel biomedical solutions in academic and industry settings. Faculty are based in Medicine, Pediatrics, Radiology, Engineering, and other Stanford schools and departments. The curriculum is comprised of: 

  • » 48 units of core science, technology, and business courses spanning four consecutive quarters 

  • » Flexibly structured coursework, which allows students who are employed to work part time during the program’s duration

  • » Clinical and research rotations with a biotechnology company and a research laboratory

  • » A summer industry internship designed to gain hands-on drug development experienceA faculty-mentored capstone research project in industry or academia

  • » A faculty-mentored capstone research project in industry or academia

Program Description and Outcomes

M-TRAM is a professional degree program that trains students to advance promising biomedical solutions from early-stage research through to full regulatory approval. Technology areas of focus include immunotherapy, gene therapy, vaccines, biomarkers, single-cell omics, and medical devices. M-TRAM combines flexible classroom learning with hands-on, team-based medical research, one-on-one mentoring by renowned Stanford faculty and investigators, and on-site biotechnology training.

By the end of the one-year program, students will have gained the problem-solving skills, competencies, and strategies:

  • » Apply clinical specimens to emerging technologies

  • » Expand professional networks and career opportunities

  • » Develop a full product development plan encompassing pre-clinical, clinical, manufacturing, and regulatory modules

  • » Identify unmet medical needs
  • » Develop medical hypotheses
  • » Design pre-clinical and clinical studies

Admissions Requirements

Candidates are invited to apply to join the next year's 2023-2024 cohort; classes will start in September 2023. 

M-TRAM will accept candidates from outside Stanford, including international students.

The application portal for those applying for the next cycle, academic year 2023-24, opens on Sept. 15 (2022). MTRAM will be listed in the application as a choice and on the following page of the admissions website, along with all the other programs:

To apply now, click on the following link:


Application requirements include:

  • » Minimum of a Bachelor’s (BSc) degree from a recognized university

  • » CV/resume outlining previous clinical and/or basic research experience

  • » Undergraduate and graduate transcripts

  • » Three letters of reference 

  • » Statement of intent

  • In addition, an interview with the program directors will take place in March, 2023.

Tuition and Financial Aid

M-TRAM is a self-funded graduate program. For current Stanford tuition rates, please see Stanford graduate admissions.

The program does not typically offer a financial aid package. However, there is limited funding for exceptional circumstances, which the M-TRAM Committee will evaluate on a case-by-case basis.  If admitted, students can contact faculty in whose research they have interest, and see if they or their department have research funds to support M-TRAM studies.

Applicants are very strongly advised to apply for external fellowship support early in the application process so that the funding decision is known before the admissions process is complete.

Prospective students are encouraged to seek funding through Graduate financial aid at Stanford.

  • The Knight-Hennessy Scholars program cultivates and supports a highly-engaged, multidisciplinary and multicultural community of graduate students from across Stanford University, and delivers a diverse collection of educational experiences, preparing graduates to address complex challenges facing the world. Knight-Hennessy Scholars participate in an experiential leadership development program known as the King Global Leadership Program and receive funding for up to three years of graduate study at Stanford. For 2023/24 two applications must be submitted separately; one to Knight-Hennessy by October 12, 2022, 1 pm PST, and one to M-TRAM by December 2022. Visit to learn more and apply.


Do you have more questions about the program? 

Please email questions to

Program Leadership

Students will be mentored by M-TRAM’s directors, who have exemplary medical and clinical research backgrounds and extensive industry experience.

Dean Felsher is professor of oncology and pathology in the Department of Medicine and director of the Translational Research and Applied Medicine (TRAM) Center, which promotes the translation of novel research discoveries from the laboratory to the clinic. Dr. Felsher is internationally regarded for his basic and translational medical research in oncology, therapeutics, and diagnostics.

George Tidmarsh is adjunct professor of pediatrics and board member of the Lucille Packard Foundation for Children's Health. Involved with the department of pediatrics in various capacities since 1988, he has successfully pioneered the development of multiple therapeutic agents from discovery through to full regulatory approval, including DOXIL for the treatment of solid tumors, BEXXAR for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and GIAPREZA for refractory shock, among others.

Gary M. Shaw, DrPH, is the NICU Nurses Endowed Professor of Pediatrics, Associate Department Chair (for clinical research) in Pediatrics and (by courtesy) also Professor of Epidemiology, and Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Stanford University. He has 35 years of experience leading and directing research programs, in collaboration with myriad scientists, that have investigated sociodemographic and biologic factors for the etiologies of various reproductive and pediatric outcomes such as human birth defects, and preterm birth. His efforts have led to the publication of more than 550 scientific papers. He has been the principal investigator or co-investigator on >60 government (R01s, U01s, P01s) or foundation grants. His scientific discoveries of most significance have targeted nutritional etiologies of specific birth defects and focused on genetic susceptibilities to exogenous exposures as risks of health outcomes. In these scientific efforts he has collected and utilized big data sets, built large biologic repositories, pioneered the research use of newborn bloodspots, and developed and coordinated interdisciplinary/transdisciplinary teams. He considers teaching and mentoring trainees to be one of his greatest privileges. Over the years, he has mentored the research trajectories of dozens of individuals at varying places in their research training. He serves on several scientific editorial boards and is an elected member of numerous professional societies. He also serves as the faculty lead for the Stanford Maternal & Child Health Research Institute’s Drug and Device Development (D3) Training Program, where he established the educational structure necessary to formalize a collaborative effort with pharmaceutical and medical device companies to train residents, clinical fellows, and early career faculty in industry’s approach to medical product development. He currently serves as Co-PI of the March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center at Stanford University and the PI of the California Center (U01) that investigates the risk and preventive factors for human birth defects.

Dr. Joanna Liliental joined Stanford in 2003 and is currently the Executive Director of the M-TRAM graduate program. Dr. Liliental completed her Ph.D. at UCLA and postdoctoral training at Stanford University in the laboratory of Dr. Stanley Cohen. In addition to directing M-TRAM, Dr. Liliental is a senior research scientist and associate director of the TRAM, a program she built together with Dr. Felsher, and has mentored and trained over 500 students, fellows, and faculty. She is also the founding director of the Translational Applications Service Center (TASC), a Stanford Medicine resource center that provides shared access to clinical research technologies, and trains and mentors investigators in translational medicine projects. 

Laura has worked in higher education for 12 years, the majority of that time at Stanford University, where she managed the process of creating and the renewal of degree programs at the registrar’s office, and in the Graduate Admissions office, as an Associate Director and interim Director. In addition to ensuring compliance of academic policies related to program review, she also advised on the exceptions to graduate and undergraduate policies, as well and managed several subcommittees. She has spearheaded the successful roll-out of online process for major non-matriculated programs, has updated policy on transcript submissions, led review of exceptions to admissions policies, vetted international and domestic credentials for admissions, and successfully updated online archiving processes.  

Laura was former Vice President of Professional Development for PACRAO, and was chair of AACRAO’s Women’s Caucus. She has written and presented on several topics related to women’s issues, such as bias, women inequity during the pandemic, diversity, and leadership. Laura is also an official facilitator for the Google initiative #IamRemarkable, which supports the promoting of achievements of underrepresented communities.  

Before her involvement in higher education, Laura worked in publishing as an arts/photo editor, specializing in rights and permissions. She has worked with authors, photographers, art directors and museums all over the world.  

In addition to being mentored by M-TRAM’s program directors, students will have the opportunity to work with other world-class Stanford faculty mentors and to interact with leaders in industry serving on M-TRAM’s Advisory Board.

Advisory Board

Angelique Lee, JD

VP, Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer at Jazz Pharmaceuticals

Nancy Lurker, MBA

President and CEO, EyePoint Pharmaceuticals

Bill Lundberg, MD

President, CEO and Principal Financial Officer of Merus, NV

Steven Pfeiffer, PhD, MBA

Senior Vice President of Technical Operations for Odonate Therapeutics, Inc.

Melissa Seymour, MBA

Vice President of Global Quality Control for Bristol Myers Squibb, Inc.

Jeff Sherman, MD, FACP

Chief Medical Officer and Executive Vice President at Horizon Therapeutics