Summer Research Opportunities for Freshmen and Sophomores

Check out these five programs if you’re an incoming freshman or sophomore interested in conducting research this summer.

By Sydney Nikols | February 17, 2017

The Jackson Laboratory aims to teach students about the nature of scientific research.

Attending a summer research program is a great way to build your resume and gain important experience in a field that interests you. If you’re an incoming freshman or sophomore, many programs aimed at upperclassmen won’t accept your application; however, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out -- these five excellent programs welcome younger candidates.

Now that you know which programs to consider, you can work towards spending your summer conducting research in a field that interests you.

1. The Jackson Laboratory Summer Student Program

The Summer Student Program at non-profit organization The Jackson Laboratory aims to teach students about the nature of scientific research, making it a great starting point for underclassmen who are interested in the subject. The competitive program offers select high schoolers and undergraduates room, board and an additional $4,500 to complete the ten-week session in Bar Harbor, Maine, and nearby Acadia National Park. Participants conduct research in a wide range of areas including genomics, metabolic diseases and bioinformatics and computational biology.

2. National Institutes of Health Research and Internship Opportunities

All incoming or current college students are eligible to apply to the competitive summer programs at the National Institutes of Health, a government-run medical research agency. Participants receive stipends between $1,700 and $2,200 to conduct biomedical and cancer research at sites all over the country.

3. The Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program

The Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program at the University of Washington guides students through the process of conducting research related to biodiversity, food, water and climate change. Aimed at freshmen and sophomores, the eight-week program provides students with room, board and a weekly stipend of $500. Students who show particular promise while in the program may be invited to Seattle the following year to join the Urban Conservation Solutions Team, a group that addresses the need to preserve the environment within a bustling city. Students may also be invited to continue pursuing conservation studies and research by becoming conservation interns in subsequent years.

The Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program guides students through the process of conducting research related to biodiversity, food, water and climate change.
Photo: Ufl.edu

4. J. Craig Venture Institute Internship Program

The J. Craig Venture Institute, an organization dedicated to genomic research, sponsors an internship program that provides high school and college students with the chance to conduct research in areas like human genomic medicine, infectious diseases, bioinformatics and software engineering. Each participant is paired with a mentor who tailors the student’s internship experience to his or her educational level and abilities. Students work 40 hours a week and receive a wage of about $11 an hour.

5. Eugene and Ruth Roberts Summer Student Academy

The Eugene and Ruth Roberts Summer Student Academy, sponsored by City of Hope (named one of the best cancer hospitals in the country by U.S. News and World Report) invites high school and college students to choose their own biomedical research projects and work under the mentorship of accomplished physicians and scientists. Students receive a $4,000 stipend and the chance to present their findings at the Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research (SCCUR).

Now that you know which programs to consider, you can work towards spending your summer conducting research in a field that interests you.

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