The Natural History Museum is closed Tuesday, December 5. We will reopen to the public Wednesday, December 6.

carolina Avila putting up trap

Understanding Nature & Los Angeles Biodiversity


Understanding Nature and Los Angeles Biodiversity (UNLAB) through museum collections and field-based research is an NSF-funded postbaccalaureate training program based in the Research & Collections Department at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHMLAC). This program will host three cohorts of mentees in a 1-year research and professional preparation program working with NHMLAC curators as mentors.  UNLAB is funded through the Research and Mentoring for Postbaccalaureates in Biological Sciences (RaMP) program at the National Science Foundation. 

NHMLAC curators serve as the primary mentors for UNLAB mentees, with co-mentors from other regional institutions and agencies. Each mentee will work on a research project that explores the history of Los Angeles biodiversity or the impact of humans and urbanization on Los Angeles biodiversity. In addition to research, mentees will participate in professional development activities and have opportunities to learn more about museum careers. All activities will be based at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in Exposition Park in Los Angeles.

The UNLAB program is for postbaccalaureates who did not have an opportunity to conduct research during their undergraduate degree program, with a focus on postbaccalaureates who have been historically excluded and are underrepresented in the natural sciences. The application window for the first cohort is February 3, 2023–March 3, 2023. Please sign up for the email list to be notified of updates and informational webinars. Applicants will be notified of their selection for the program no later than 30 April 2023.

The application window for the 2023-2024 cohort is now closed. Please sign up for our email list if you are interested in participating in future cohorts or would like to receive program updates. If you would like to contact the UNLAB team directly please email



Students doing fossil prep in the VP lab
Students Ponding in NHM Nature Gardens
Student Working on Dino Hall Fossil Display

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