Program Description: Summer programs at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) provide an opportunity to spend a summer working at the NIH side-by-side with some of the leading scientists in the world, in an environment devoted exclusively to biomedical research. The NIH consists of the 240-bed Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center and more than 1200 laboratories/research projects located on the main campus in Bethesda, MD and the surrounding area as well as in Baltimore and Frederick, MD; Research Triangle Park, NC; Phoenix, AZ; Hamilton, MT; Framingham, MA; and Detroit, MI.
Awards cover a minimum of eight weeks, with students generally arriving at the NIH in May or June. The NIH Institutes and the Office of Intramural Training & Education sponsor a wide range of summer activities including lectures featuring distinguished NIH investigators, career/professional development workshops, and Summer Poster Day.
2011 Community College Summer Enrichment Program (CCSEP): In summer 2011, the NIH will offer, for the second time, a special SIP program designed to recruit community college students to the NIH. Students in CCSEP can take advantage of all the opportunities available to other SIP interns. In addition, they will make a commitment to completing an enrichment curriculum.
If you are a community college student and interested, please read about CCSEP.
Eligibility: The Summer Internship Program is for students who will be sixteen years of age or older at the time they begin the program and who are currently enrolled at least half-time in high school or an accredited U.S. college or university as undergraduate, graduate, or professional students. Students who have been accepted into a college or university program may also apply. To be eligible, candidates must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
Stipend Information: The stipends for trainees are adjusted yearly; the level depends on prior experience. For details, see the Trainee Stipends page.
Application Procedure: Prospective candidates must apply online. The application is available from mid-November to March 1. It requires submission of
- a curriculum vitae or resume,
- a list of coursework and grades,
- a cover letter describing the applicant’s research interests and career goals, and
- the names and contact information for two references.
Candidates may also specify the scientific methodologies or disease/organ systems that interest them.
Selection: The NIH Summer Internship Program is highly completive. In 2010, more than 6700 applications were submitted, and about 1200 interns were selected. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis from November through April by scientists in the Institutes and Centers of the NIH. Individual scientists select their own summer interns; there is no centralized selection process. For suggestions on how to increase your chances of being offered a position, please read the SIP Frequently Asked Questions.
Candidates will be informed of their selection by the hiring Institute. Successful candidates will be required to submit the following documentation to their Institute or Center prior to beginning their training:
- Official high school, college, or graduate school transcripts
- Proof of U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status. U.S. citizens may submit a copy of their birth certificate or passport. Permanent residents will need to provide a copy of their alien registration card.