Students in a row and jumping into the air

life sciences mentorship and career readiness



Several students sitting on bench outside and talking

BioLaunch Overview

  The BioLaunch program offers a supportive, community-focused approach to welcoming new students to the College of Biological Sciences and to supporting them throughout their academic journey at UC Davis.  

  • A Successful Transition to Campus
  • ​​The BioLaunch Mentor Collective provides support for new students by pairing them with an established peer mentor who helps guide them through their first year on campus. 
  • A Community of Peers and Mentorship​​​​​​
  • Freshman and first-year transfer students can enroll in Exploring Biological Sciences for opportunities to network and develop professional skills in a low-intensity, pass-no-pass seminar-style course.
  • Ongoing Professional Development 
  • After the first quarter, freshman can enroll in the BioLaunch Seminar Series, which helps life sciences students prepare for a variety of careers and continues in the second, third and fourth years of study.

BioLaunch Mentor Collective

The BioLaunch Mentor Collective pairs new first-year students with established peers, and allows both students a chance to share common experiences, advice and helpful resources.

  • How does the collective work?
  • Based on your interests, you’ll be matched with a student mentor who can answer many common questions about academics, campus and more. This mentor began as a new student too and has volunteered to share their experiences to help get you familiar with life at UC Davis and welcome you to our community.
  • Who are the mentors?
  • Your mentor will be a returning student in the College of Biological Sciences. If you tell us about your interests and the qualities of your ideal mentor, we’ll match you with a student that best fits your unique profile.
  • How do I sign up?
  • Incoming College of Biological Sciences students are invited to this program by email before fall quarter. If you have not received this email and want to participate, please contact the BioLaunch Program Coordinator at

BioLaunch First-Year Course

  • Year 1 - Fall: Freshman and Transfers
  • Exploring Biological Sciences (BIS 005 freshman, BIS 198 transfer)
    This is a low-intensity, one-unit, pass/no-pass, seminar-style course designed to familiarize new students with the College of Biological Sciences. You will learn about research opportunities and career paths from professors and researchers who share their journeys. Open to all freshman and first-year transfer students. 
    First-Year Course FAQs

BioLaunch Seminar Series

  • Year 1 - Winter/Spring: Freshman Seminar
  • BioLaunch: Career Pathways Seminar (BIS 006)
    Exploration of diverse career options, building professional networks, transferable skills, and developing materials and strategies for landing relevant experiential learning opportunities in the biological sciences fields. Open to freshmen who have completed BIS 005.
  • Year 2 - Fall/Winter/Spring: Sophomore Seminar
  • BioLaunch: Career Lab Seminar (BIS 060)
    Guest professionals with backgrounds in biological sciences will participate in interactive sessions with students who will gain exposure to a range of roles they might consider after graduation. Must have completed BIS 006 to enroll.
  • Year 3 - Fall: Junior Seminar
  • Fall: BioLaunch: Experiential Learning Seminar (BIS 106)
    BIS 106: Applied learning experience for self-evaluation of a current or recent internship or research position. Analysis of workplace culture, identification of opportunities for professional growth, and useful lessons from peer experiences. Must have completed BIS 060 to enroll.
  • Year 4 - Fall: Senior Seminar
  • Fall: BioLaunch: Career Next Steps Seminar (BIS 160)
    Steps to launching one’s career; including grad applications and job searching. Preparation for the next step after undergraduate work at UC Davis with support from staff, faculty, and industry partners. Applications for careers, graduate and professional schools. Must have completed BIS 106 to enroll.