PPREP Program


Interested in applying to graduate programs or any research position in psychology?
Great! The Harvard Psychology community is thrilled to announce our offering in the form of an informational event for individuals interested in pursuing research positions and/or doctorates in psychology: Prospective Ph.D. & RA Event in Psychology (PPREP).
Who is this program for?
The goal of this workshop is to recruit and help students from historically minoritized groups in STEM with their applications to graduate school, lab manager, and/or research assistant positions. If you hold membership in one or more underrepresented and/or historically minoritized groups, including but not limited to, BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color), first-generation college students, those from low-income / low-resource backgrounds, non-cis-gendered individuals, and members of the queer community, then PPREP is for you! This is not just for Harvard students or people applying to Harvard programs or positions. Anyone, from anywhere, applying to ANY Ph.D program or research assistant position is invited to apply to PPREP.
Why is Harvard Psychology doing this?
The Harvard Psychology Department is actively and intentionally committing to building an inclusive field (see our Call to Action). While we intend to be more intentional about increasing diversity and support for diverse individuals within our own department, we also feel strongly that we should help historically minoritized individuals pursue training in psychology no matter what institutions they're interested in, because the field needs everything you have to offer! As such, our goal in offering this workshop is to help you put your best foot forward as you apply widely for advanced training opportunities in psychology.
What is the format?
Our community of graduate students, research assistants, post-doctoral fellows, and faculty will hold a free weekend of informal panel discussions and application workshops. You will also be paired with a current member of our psychology department (i.e., faculty, post-doc, and/or graduate student) who will provide structured feedback on the materials you intend to use to apply to research positions and advanced degree opportunities in psychology (i.e., cover letters, personal statements, and CVs).
What will the application feedback portion look like?
For people applying to graduate school, you will be expected to have a working draft of your personal statement or cover letter and CV ready by the week after the workshops. You will then receive feedback on your personal  statement and diversity statement (if applicable) from the mentor you are paired with.
For people applying for research positions, you will be expected to have a working draft of your cover letter and CV ready by the week after the workshops. You will then receive feedback on these materials from the mentor you are paired with.
How do I apply?
You can apply here!
What's the application like?
The application can take from 10 to 20 minutes, and consists of a few quick questions about your background and identities that you hold, as well as a few tweet-length short answer questions about who you are and why you're interested in this program. We also ask about disability status so that we can work toward making the workshops as accessible as possible. This application is meant to be very informal!
Is this only for people who are applying to positions at Harvard?
Nope! You can apply to this workshop regardless of whether or not you plan to apply to Harvard (though we hope you'll apply to Harvard as well)!  Please Note:  this event is NOT associated with admissions to or employment at Harvard University.
How are participants selected?
We will first review applications to ensure selection criteria are met and prioritize applicants who are underrepresented in STEM. Then, we will randomly select from this pool by sub-discipline (i.e., cognitive/brain/behavior, developmental, clinical, and social) to form a cohort for the event so that we can match applicants with mentors in their area of interest.
We are using random selection to select the final cohort of attendees to ensure a maximally equitable selection process. If anyone eligible is not selected, please see our FAQ page linked under the “Helpful Info” section below for links to similar programs.
What did last year’s participants think…?
“I attended Harvard’s PPREP program this weekend and it was the most helpful graduate school info I’ve ever received. EVERY grad school should provide programs like this if they’re serious about diversity, equity, and inclusion work!”
“Thank you all for an informative and empowering weekend!”
“Feeling lucky & grateful to have participated in Harvard’s PPREP this weekend. Panelists gave indispensable, candid advice on applying to psych grad school and navigating academia with a marginalized identity.”
Although we only have data from one cohort and this is limited to the attendees who ended up applying to graduate school and replied to our follow up survey (n = 80 responses), 76% (61 out of 80) received invitations to interview for a PhD program. Of those interviewed, 75% (46 out of 61) received offers to a PhD program.
Likewise, of attendees who ended up applying to RA positions and replied to our follow up survey (n = 26 responses), 65% (17 out of 26) received invitations to interview for an RA position. Of those interviewed, 94% (16 out of 17) received offers for an RA position.
Important Dates:
  • September 16, 2022: applications are due
  • September 30, 2022: email notification of admission decision goes out
  • October 15 - 16, 2022: the informal, live event will take place virtually (via Zoom)
  • October 17 to November 1, 2022: Peer/faculty feedback on application materials (note: please have drafts of your research statement or cover letter and CV ready)
Eligibility Requirements:
  • At least 18 years of age
  • Individuals must be planning on applying for full-time employment in research positions and/or advanced degree opportunities in psychology THIS YEAR (i.e., Fall 2022)
Important Notes:
  • Your application materials will not be seen by members outside of the selection committee for this program (i.e., mentors or other members of the department) and will not be considered if you decide to apply to Harvard for PhD programs or RA positions.
  • You can save your responses to this application and return later to finish and submit the application if necessary. However, after 1 week of inactivity, your application will be deleted
If you have questions about this event or the application, please email HarvardPsychRecruitment@gmail.com
Helpful Links