Announcing the UPR-IPERT Program


What is it?

The UPR-IPERT program is a multi-campus and interdisciplinary training program at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) that offers you training in the skills to conduct biomedical and health-related research.

UPR-IPERT combines in-person training activities and online trainings and resources. In-person training activities are offered at different UPR campuses. Online activities will be accessible through this page soon.

The UPR-IPERT program is located at the Institute of Interdisciplinary Research at UPR in Cayey and at UPR in Humacao. The program also has representatives (liaisons) in all campuses (see their contact information at the bottom of the page).

Register here by creating an online profile with CienciaPR. If you are already a CienciaPR member you only have to update your information to indicate your membership to UPR-IPERT.

Who is it for?

The program seeks to benefit ...

  • Low-income undergraduate students enrolled in Social Science or Natural Sciences programs, who are interested in graduate studies in the biomedical sciences, behavioral sciences and other areas related to the study of health.
  • Social Science or Natural Sciences faculty members interested in strengthening their research,  who are committed to the mentoring of undergraduate students.

What are the program's objectives?

  1. That more university students from different disciplines and socioeconomic profiles can benefit from training programs in biomedical and health research throughout Puerto Rico and beyond.
  2. That participating students acquire the necessary skills and credentials to graduate and continue graduate studies in health areas.
  3. That they gain an interdisciplinary perspective on the ethical, social and environmental aspects that affect health.
  4. That faculty members from different disciplines (especially who are pre-tenure) can strengthen their research performance and mentoring skills.

What are the benefits? 

For undergraduate students the benefits are ...

  1. Access to a network of virtual mentors through SciencePR and National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN)
  2. Certificate in online research skills (6 virtual modules)
  3. Free regional workshops on methods of quantitative analysis (4 Saturdays / 3 hours)
  4. Conferences and webinars on how research is done in the field of health, among others
  5. Group academic coaching and resilience workshops to complete professional development plan *

* At UPR Cayey and Humacao for 1st year students and participants in research programs.

For faculty members, the benefits are ...

  1. Regional workshops on:
    1. Specialized topics in quantitative analysis
    2. Skills to improve your performance as a mentor for undergraduate students
  2. Access to a network of virtual collaborators and mentors through SciencePR and the National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN)
  3. Online conferences (webinars) that complement your courses on varied topics of research in biomedical and other areas related to the study of health
  4. Support to develop your "professional development plan" (PDP) with a faculty mentor from the UPR experienced in research *
  5. Access to weekly "writing and creating groups" meetings *

* Available at UPR- Cayey, Humacao, Río Piedras, Ponce and Bayamón

What are the topics of online conferences (webinars)?

UPR -IPERT will offer a series of online webinars on interdisciplinary topics related to the field of health research. The following topics will be available in 2017-2018:

  1. Gender and inequity in health
  2. Bioprospecting of natural antibiotics
  3. Critical Thinking and Scientific Literature
  4. Methods for data collection
  5. Skills for data analysis
  6. Social Determinants of Health
  7. Ethical Aspects of Health Research
  8. Citizen science and effective communication of results to the community

Interested students will be able to get credit for these online conferences (webinars) towards obtaining a 6-hour UPR-IPERT research skills certificate, available in July 2018.


The UPR- IPERT program has been funded for 5 years, from October 2016 to June 2021.

The statistical and quantitative analysis workshops for undergraduate students begin in summer 2017 and will be offered twice every year in different UPR precincts. Other workshops directed at the faculty will be announced soon. Between September 2017 and July 2018, the program will offer the webinar series online through this space. We will soon provide detailed information on these and other activities.

How do I participate?

To participate in the UPR-IPERT, you must open an account with CienciaPR and sign up for the program. If you already have an account with CienciaPR you only have to modify your profile to indicate your membership to the UPR-IPERT. By registering, you will receive information about the activities and opportunities when they are launched. If you are a student or professor of the UPR, we recommend that you communicate with your university link contact to obtain more information about the resources and activities available to you.









Erick Molina Rojas

Natural Science Department


787.890.2681 Ext. 4455/2230


Sondra I. Vega Castillo


787-815-0000 ext. 3462


Juan Negrón

Social Sciences Department

Senior Mentor/Liaison

787-993-0000 ext. 3398


Maricela Porbén

Director Center for Multidisciplinary Research


787-257-0000 ext. 3297


Isar P. Godreau


Jannette Gavillán


Mariluz Franco Ortiz


Suzette Acevedo

Institute of Interdisciplinary Research





Training Coordinator


Senior Mentor

787 738-2161 ext. 2615, 2616

UPR-Medical Sciences

 Prof.Elaine Ruíz

Miguel Otero
Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine


Senior Mentor

 787-798-3001 ext. 2332

787-758-2525 x 2098


Raymond Tremblay

Esther Vega

Biology Department

PI/Senior Mentor

Student activity coordinator & Liaison


787-850-9388 ext. 9161, 9192



Luisa R. Seijo Maldonado

Social Sciences Department


(787) 832-4040

ext. 6203



Edu Suárez

RISE Program Director

Senior Mentor/Liaison

787-844-8181 Exts. 2652, 3086, 3085 

UPR-Río Piedras

Giovanni Tirado

Institute of Psychological Research

Juan S. Ramirez Lugo


Senior Mentor



787-764-0000 ext. 4179


787-764-0000, ext. 88068


Carmen S. Rivera Medina

Agricultural Technology Department


787-894-2828 ext. 2401