Applications for summer research programs for undergraduates in STEM fields — including NSF REUs, Amgen Scholars, DAAD RISE, and the NOAA-Hollings Scholarship—are now open.  Read the specific details about each of these programs below, as well as tips on how to apply.  The Center for Scholarship and Fellowship Advising (CFSA) offers support on writing personal statements and application essays.

 AMGEN SCHOLARS

Undergraduate summer research program in science and biotechnology hosted by ten premier research institutions: California Institute of Technology; Columbia University/Barnard College; Harvard University; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; National Institutes of Health; Stanford University; University of California, Berkeley; University of California, Los Angeles; University of California, San Francisco; Washington University in St. Louis

Research areas: BIOCHEMISTRY • BIOENGINEERING • BIOINFORMATICS • BIOPSYCHOLOGY • BIOTECHNOLOGY • CHEMICAL AND BIOMOLECULAR ENGINEERING • CHEMISTRY • IMMUNOLOGY • MEDICAL PHARMACOLOGY • MICROBIOLOGY • MOLECULAR, CELL AND DEVELOPMENTAL BIOLOGY • MOLECULAR GENETICS • MOLECULAR MEDICINE • MOLECULAR PHARMACOLOGY • NEUROBIOLOGY • NEUROSCIENCE • PATHOLOGY • PHYSIOLOGICAL PSYCHOLOGY • PHYSIOLOGICAL SCIENCE • STATISTICS • TOXICOLOGY

Eligibility: Sophomores and juniors who will be continuing their undergraduate work in 2016-17 with an interest in pursuing a Ph.D. in research science or an M.D.-Ph.D.  Non-graduating seniors who will be pursuing a fifth year of undergraduate work are also eligible.

Applicants must have a GPA of 3.2 or above and be US citizens or permanent residents.

Details: Program dates vary, though all Amgen scholars will participate in a national symposium in mid-summer in California.  All Amgen Scholars will receive significant financial support; funding details vary by host institution.

Applying: Each host institution requires its own application; applicants may apply to more than one program.  All applications will require, at a minimum: letters of recommendation, transcript, personal statement

Deadline: February 1 or February 15, 2017 (varies by program)

 http://www.amgenscholars.com/us-program

DAAD RISE SCHOLARSHIP

Summer internship program for undergraduates in STEM fields to work with research groups at German universities.  RISE interns are carefully matched with doctoral students whom they assist and who serve as their mentors.

Research areas:  BIOLOGY • CHEMISTRY• PHYSICS • EARTH SCIENCES • ENGINEERING

Eligibility:  Open to second- and third-year students who will be matriculated as undergraduates during the period of the internship.  German language competency is not necessary, as the working language will be English.  Open to citizens of any nation currently enrolled at 4-year US colleges and universities.  Interns receive a monthly stipend to cover expenses. International travel costs are not covered.

Details:  Start dates range between May 15 and July 10, 2017 for a duration of ten weeks to three months. Dates may be flexible.

Applying:  Candidates should search the RISE website’s application portal for information on specific internship opportunities in line with their academic and research interests.  Applicants are encouraged to apply to more than one project.

Deadline: January 15, 2017

https://www.daad.de/rise/en/rise-Germany/

NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION RESEARCH EXPERIENCES FOR UNDERGRADUATES (NSF REU)

Supports active research participation during the summer by undergraduate students in any areas of research funded by the National Science Foundation at designated REU host institutions.

Research areas:  Any areas of research funded by the NSF.

Eligibility: Undergraduate students apply directly to REU Sites or to NSF-funded investigators who receive REU Supplements.  Eligibility requirements vary.

Details: Start dates and program duration vary.  Students are granted stipends and, in many cases, assistance with housing and travel.

Applying: Candidates should use the NSF website’s REU search page to identify opportunities in subject areas in line with their academic and research interests. Applicants must contact the individual sites for information and application materials.

Deadlines: December – March (varies)

https://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/index.jsp

NOAA – HOLLINGS SCHOLARSHIP

Scholarships to provide tuition support and internship/research opportunities for undergraduates studying in fields critical to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in climate, weather, oceans and coasts; to share that knowledge and information with others; and to conserve and manage coastal and marine ecosystems and resources.

Research areas: OCEANIC SCIENCE • ATMOSPHERIC SCIENCE • TECHNOLOGY THAT SUPPORTS STEWARDSHIP OF THE OCEAN AND ATMOSPHERE• SOCIAL SCIENCES RELATED TO OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ISSUES AND ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY• TEACHER EDUCATION IN ENVIRONMENTAL LITERACY

Details:  Tuition support of up to $9500/year toward undergraduate study.  The award also includes a paid ten week full-time summer internship at NOAA facilities across the US and participation in conferences.

 Eligibility:  Students must be in their second year of a four year undergraduate program or third year of a five year undergraduate program at the time of application and have a declared major supporting their study of oceanic and atmospheric science and environmental literacy (may include biological, social, and physical sciences; mathematics; engineering; computer and information sciences; and teacher education).

Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or above and be US citizens.

Applying:  Applicants submit a completed application form, transcript, essay, and two letters of recommendation

Deadline: January 31, 2017

http://www.noaa.gov/office-education/hollings-scholarship

TIPS FOR APPLYING TO REUs AND OTHER SUMMER RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES

Begin early:  You should begin researching opportunities, drafting application essays and personal statements, and gathering relevant documents over winter break.  These applications demand a great deal of attention and planning.  Don’t wait until the last minute!

Talk to faculty:  Make appointments with faculty working in the disciplines and fields in which you’re interested in conducting research.  They will be able to offer advice about programs to seek out, and may have connections to faculty working with REUs at other institutions.

Research carefully and broadly:  Set aside time to dig into the programs’ websites and databases to explore opportunities at various host institutions. Use websites and databases to search by keyword or research interest, but don’t restrict your search only to specific terms.  Opportunities may be coded under different titles, so it’s worthy searching broadly.

Apply widely: Many REUs and other summer opportunities are as competitive as top graduate programs, with hundreds of applicants for just a few positions.  Don’t let this discourage you, but be pragmatic!  Plan to apply to at least ten REUs to maximize the likelihood of getting one of them.

Read application requirements carefully: Programs require different materials and forms (for example, some sites require official transcripts while others will accept unofficial transcripts) and have different deadlines.  Pay attention to the guidelines and be sure your application is complete.

Personal statements:  These short essays (usually 500 -1000 words) are very important, and are usually the only free-form response section on an application.  Make every word count, and be specific about why you want to spend your summer pursuing this research opportunity and why you are the ideal candidate.  Be clear about academic preparation, experiences, and volunteer or outreach activities that might be relevant.  Your personal statement should be specifically tailored to each individual application.  Form letters will be obvious, and will not score points with selection committees.  CFSA is here to help you with your personal statements!

Letters of recommendation:  Most competitive summer research opportunities require two or three letters.  Seek out academic recommenders (university faculty members, not your RA or your high school coach) who can speak to your accomplishments, skills, and scholarly dedication.  Be sure to contact recommenders at least three weeks in advance of the application deadline.  Send thank you notes once recommendation letters have been submitted, and follow up to let your recommenders know the outcome of your application.

Make an appointment with CFSA! Get feedback on your essays and personal statements.  We’re here to help!  Center for Fellowship and Scholarship Advising: 315.443.2759.  Jolynn Parker: jmpark02@syr.edu / Naomi Shanguhyia: nyshangu@syr.edu