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Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by latinfridley, Nov 24, 2002.
Has anyone participated in a summer research program?Was it worth it?
i received an undergraduate fellowship at a state medical school. it was kind of competitive, but well worth it. it's usually done the summer after junior year. it definitely gets you an "in" if you do it at a med school. i was surprised when i saw my research mentor was on the admissions committee!!
anyway, the experience was great, but it depends on your lab...mine was very relaxed. i only worked from 9 to 3 or so. and the NIH foots the bills usually. i got a sweet stipend to live in an awesome city.
i wish you luck. if you have questions, let me know
I participated in a summer research program this past summer. I had never done any research before and just wanted to get some experience. I knew I could do undergraduate research during the school year and not get paid (just get credit hours), but I figured I would rather get paid for the experience. The program I was in paid $4000 for ten weeks, some others I applied to were between $$3200 and $4000 for 8-10 weeks. One drawback is that since you are only there a short time, you really dont get to see the outcome of the project, its not usually enough time to actually complete a project. Therefore it is unlikely you could publish anything from research done in one summer. Hope that helped, if you have further questions feel free to ask.
The only problem with doing research as an undergrad is getting your foot in. That is, most programs place a HUGE emphasis on having prior experience. Of course, this represents a paradoxical dilemma. Most people I know "gatewayed" into research at their university, and then their applications for summer programs were strong enough to get in. Grades themselves dont really cut it in my experience, but can be helpful in landing a job at your own university that could eventually lead to summer jobs elsewhere.
The program i am going to apply to is a 9 week program at a highly ranked med school, and it pays a 4000 stipend. Theyre are a huge # of labs to choose from. Its extremely competitive, but you dont need prior research experience unless ur applying as a freshman. i think around 15% of applicants get in the program. Thats pretty freakin competitive.
I dont know what program you are referring to, but you might not NEED prior research experience, but if it is a highly ranked med school I would imagine it would be a huge boon to your app. 15% is actually sorta average for a summer program, most I applied to were 5-10%. But if you do have research it will definitely propel your chances of getting into such a program. If you dont, it still sounds like you have a good shot.
It is absolutely worth it if you are interested and put some effort into it. I was fortunate to land a summer research fellowship at Sloan prior to starting med school. They placed me in a lab that matched up nicely with my stated interests based on my ps on my app. I absolutely loved the work, attending lectures, and watching the fellows squirm in head/neck reviews/rounds. As a bonus I got my name on an abstract. Why not go for it and make the most of it?
Yes, like Gleevac said the tough part is that some programs are pretty competative and have only a limited number of slots that are funded. Therefore it is best to get some of the basic lab skills under your belt before you apply to a program. Also some of these heavily favor juniors as opposed to freshman or sophmore. With that said, they are a great opportunity to travel to a different city for a short time, to get to know people in a med school that you like, gain new research skills, etc. I participated in the drug discovery program at northwestern (good program!). I had a great experience and will be presenting the research at a national meeting in april. They had a lecture series geared towards undergrads once a week, with a very tasty free lunch. It was great to meet other undergrads as well. Anyways, let me know if you have any questions...i'd be happy to answer !
I did an undergrad research program over the summer years back. I did it in a lab I was already involved in. The benefit was that I got to attend small group meetings, hear speakers, attend seminars, etc. I found most of the activities to be worthless, but a few were nice. I'd recommend doing a summer program if you're fairly new to research, otherwise I think they're a waste of time if you already have a lab to work in. And it helps to do it at a place you can later return to - that way your one summer can turn into a multi-year research experience, multiple publications, increasing responsibility, and a great letter of recommendation from the PI. Multi-year projects are also nice for doing a research-based honors/senior thesis in college.
I participated in the summer undergraduate research fellowship (SURF) program at Mayo two summers ago. I cannot say enough good things about this program. If you are seriously considering summer research then definitely look into it. It was 10 weeks long and paid $4000. I believe there are approximately 60 spots for around 800 applicants. Mayo was an incredible place to spend a summer and I would recommend the program very highly to anyone interested.
Summer research programs are great! I applied to about 11 of them last year and got accepted into two of them last summer. I ended up taking the SPUR program at Medical College of Wisc. It was 10 weeks and paid 2500 + provided housing. It was definately worth it, I made lots of friends, had a blast in Milwaukee.
In general, there are a couple main types. Moat are the ones by Universities and Medical Schools--some of these are paid for by Howard Hughes or funded by the institution themselves. Most of these are tough to get into. If you have no experience at all, I'd recommend applying to the ones paid for by the National Science Foundation (NSF) called Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs. I actually applied to a couple of these and then was told that I was way overqualified, so they are meant for those with little experience prior.
Many of these can be almost as competitive as application to medical school. They require I applied to MAyo's program and got a letter back telling me that 2000 some people applied for 50 spots or something.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that many of the programs are for underrepresented minorities. So, I applied to about 11 programs, but found information for about 40 programs--most of them, since being a white male, I wasn't elgible for.
DrScottie33 check your PM's, I also went to Mayo two summers ago...
did american heart association summer fellowship two summers ago. u get $4,000 for 10 weeks of research at select institutions in cali, nevada, or utah. u either have to be a student in those three states or a resident of those three states.
If you live in the Philadelphia / S. Jersey area, check out the Coriell Institute for Medical Research in Camden, NJ. They're affiliated with UMDNJ-RWJ Med School. I did that program after freshman year, and it didn't seem all that hard to get into. If none of the more competitive/prestigious programs accept you this year, this could be a good way to get solid research experience for applying to the super-competitive programs next year. However, this program didn't pay much when I did it, and didn't provide housing.