Tips for Finding Your Mentor

Finding Your Research Mentor

Step 1: Do Your Research.

Here is some advice on how to begin researching potential labs to join this summer!

  • Broadly, there are two strategies most scholars use when searching. The first is narrowing by geographical location then laboratory interest, and the second is narrowing by laboratory interest then geographic location. Both have worked well for students in the past. 
  • An additional strategy includes asking any of your current university professors or research mentors for recommendations based on their existing networks.

As organized by broad research discipline, a few popular institutions US Bose Scholars choose for their research are:

  • Biological & Chemical Sciences: NCBS Bangalore, IISc Bangalore, National Centre for Cell Sciences (Pune)
  • Engineering: IISc Bangalore
  • Health & Medicine: Public Health Foundation of India

When researching different institutions, read about the PIs/researchers in your field of interest on their lab websites and look up their most recent publications. 

On our website (, you can see a complete list of mentors prior US Bose students have worked with. You can use this list to review the different kinds of projects students have worked on in addition to host institution locations. However, please know that WINStep is open to you working with nearly any credible research institution in India; you are not limited by the list institutions used by scholars in the past. 


Step 2: Reach Out.

***Some students try to find their mentors before they are accepted. This can save you some stress if you are selected, but please be aware if you are actively reaching out before your receive the scholarship, you must let your professor know that you working in their lab is contingent upon your acceptance for the scholarship. 

Once you have identified four to five potential labs and lead mentors in India, send them each an email. The main objective is to briefly introduce yourself (don’t forget to explicitly mention your standing as only a potential US Bose Scholar), demonstrate your engagement with their research, and explain how your interests relate. Attaching your resume for reference can be helpful, as is personalizing each email. We have templates of what scholars have used in the past available upon request. Do not be discouraged if you do not hear back from each mentor. If mentors respond with administrative questions about the US Bose Program and scholarship that you do not know the answer to, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. 


Tips from former scholars

  • If possible, ask your mentor about their lab size/overall environment; for example, will there be undergraduate or Masters students working there with you or just graduate students and scientists? It can make a big difference to have someone near your age/experience level also in the lab with you to hang out with, do things with on the weekend, etc.

If you would like assistance or guidance finding potential research institutions or mentors, please contact the WINStep Forward team. It is important – and worth the time investment – to make sure that you feel appropriately matched to your lab. is the best email ID to reach out to.

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