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Program Description

Keck telescopesThe mission of the Cal-Bridge program is to increase the number of California State University (CSU) students completing their bachelor's degree and successfully entering a PhD program to study physics, astronomy, or a closely related field. Applicants will be evaluated for admission to the program based on their academic ability or potential, motivation to attend graduate school, and financial need. Students admitted to the program will become “Cal-Bridge Scholars”.

Benefits of becoming a “Cal-Bridge Scholar” include:

  • Full scholarship support for your final two years at a participating CSU, based on demonstrated need
  • An additional year of scholarship funding to help cover the cost of your first year of graduate school at a participating UC campus*
  • Mentoring from CSU and UC faculty members
  • Professional development opportunities geared towards success in completing your undergraduate degree and in entering graduate school
  • Opportunities to participate in research with CSU and UC faculty members
  • Participating in STEM enrichment activities in a nurturing, friendly environment with other like-minded young scholars from around the CSU system

*Please note that admission to the Cal-Bridge program does not guarantee admission to a UC graduate program; Cal-Bridge scholars must successfully apply and matriculate to a participating UC graduate program in order to receive financial aid for graduate study.

Program Details


To be eligible for the program, a Cal-Bridge applicant must:

  • Be currently enrolled in a participating CSU or currently enrolled in a participating community college and expecting to transfer to a participating CSU in the coming Fall (see “Participating Schools” for a complete list). Acceptance to Cal-Bridge is contingent on acceptance and enrollment to a participating CSU by the Fall of the Cal-Bridge application year.
  • Be majoring in physics or astronomy
  • Be enrolled in 2nd and 3rd year physics classes
  • Demonstrate academic ability or potential
  • Be motivated to attend graduate school to study astronomy or related fields at a participating UC or another institution (however, please note that only Cal-Bridge scholars who matriculate to a graduate program at a participating UC will receive financial aid for graduate study; see "Participating Schools for a complete list)
Selected Cal-Bridge scholars* attending a participating CSU will be given full scholarship support for up to their last two years of attendance at their home institution, to the extent allowed by their demonstrated financial need as determined by the financial aid office at their home institution. 
*Only U.S. citizens or permanent residents are eligible to receive financial aid, but non-citizens selected to be Cal-Bridge scholars may receive all the other benefits of the program. In addition, sometimes private donations make it possible to give financial aid to non-citizens, and all eligible students are are encouraged to apply.

Participating Schools

Cal-Bridge Participating California State Universities

School Name Related Websites Faculty Contact
Cal State Dominguez Hills

Physics Department

Contact: Dr. Ximena Cid

Cal State Fullerton

Physics Department

Contact: Dr. Josh Smith

Cal State Long Beach

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Prashanth Jaikumar

Cal State Los Angeles

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Susan Terebey

Cal State Northridge

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Damian Christian

Cal Poly Pomona

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Alex Rudolph

Cal State San Bernardino

Physics Department

Contact: Dr. Carol Hood

San Diego State University

Physics Department
Astronomy Department

Contact: Dr. Eric Sandquist

Cal State San Marcos

Physics Department

Contact: Dr. Gerardo Dominguez

Cal State East Bay

Department of Physics

Contact: Dr. Amy Furniss

Sacramento State University

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. William DeGraffenreid

San Francisco State University

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Joseph Barranco

San Jose State Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Aaron Romanowsky

Sonoma State University Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Scott Severson

Cal State Stanislaus Department of Physics

Contact: Dr. Wing To

Cal-Bridge Participating University of California campuses

School Name Related Websites Faculty Contact
UC Irvine (UCI)

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Tammy Smecker-Hane

UC Los Angeles (UCLA)

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. James Larkin

UC Riverside (UCR)

Department of Physics & Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Brian Siana

UC San Diego (UCSD)

Department of Physics
Department of Astronomy

Contact: Dr. Adam Burgasser

UC Santa Barbara (UCSB)

Department of Physics
Astronomy and Astrophysics at UCSB

Contact: Dr. Omer Blaes

UC Santa Cruz (UCSC)

Physics Department
Astronomy and Astrophysics

Contact: Dr. Bruce Schumm
Contact: Dr. Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz

UC Davis (UCD)

Department of Physics

Contact: Dr. David Wittman

UC Berkeley (UCB)

Physics Department
Astronomy Department

Contact: Dr. Ori Ganor
Contact: Dr. Gibor Basri

UC Merced (UCM)

Physics Department

Contact: Dr. Jay Sharping

Cal-Bridge Participating Community Colleges, Southern California

School Name Faculty Contact
Cerritos College

Contact: Thad Szabo

Chaffey College

Contact: Garrett Kenehan

College of the Canyons

Contact: Amy Foote

Cypress College

Contact: Ron Armale

El Camino College

Contact: Arturo Hernandez

Glendale College

Contact: Marcus Afshar

MiraCosta College

Contact: Rica French

Mt San Antonio College

Contact: Michael Hood

Norco College (Riverside)

Contact: Phu Tran

Palomar College

Contact: Takashi Nakajima

Pasadena City College

Contact: Melva Alvarez

Rio Hondo Collge

Contact: Joseph Rhee

Riverside Community College

Contact: Louise Daniels

Santa Monica College

Contact: Gary Fouts

Cal-Bridge Participating Community Colleges, Northern California

School Name Faculty Contact
Cabrillo College

Contact: Joe McCullough

Chabot College

Contact: Scott Hildreth

City College of San Francisco

Contact (Astronomy Department): Lancelot Kao
Contact (Physics Department): Roger King

College of San Mateo

Contact: Darryl Stanford

Diablo Valley College

Contact: Jean Chiar

Evergreen Valley College

Contact: Celso Batalha

Foothill College

Contact: David Marasco

Gavilan College

Contact: Russell Lee

Hartnell College

Contact: Pimol Moth

Mendocino College

Contact: Tim Beck

Santa Rosa Junior College

Contact: Lynda Williams

Skyline Collge

Contact: Ilkka Koskelo

De Anza College

Contact: Eduardo Luna

San Jose City College

Contact: Jessica Smay

When and How to Apply

Applications for the 2018-2019 Cal-Bridge program are due August 18, 2018. To apply to the program, fill out the Online Application Form.

Indicate their names, addresses, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses in your on-line application where appropriate. It is your responsibility to confirm that these letters have been sent and failure to obtain these two letters will render your application incomplete and lead to its rejection without review.

Applicants who are chosen for the short list will be required to schedule a telephone interview with faculty on the selection committee.

Contact Information

If you have any questions about the program, please contact the Cal-Bridge Program at

The Cal-Bridge program is supported by the National Science Foundation under an S-STEM Grant No. DUE-1356133.

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