The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is a 10-week program that offers hands-on experience in biomedical, translational or clinical research. Students who have completed at least two years of college-level courses in one or more science programs (biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics or computer science) and are in good academic standing are eligible to apply. Students who are considering pursuing an advanced degree (Ph.D., M.D. or both) and are interested in scientific investigation would benefit most from the program.
Students are matched with a mentor from MD Anderson’s research or clinical faculty. Participants work alongside the mentor in a lab or clinic on projects designed by faculty to reflect current research. Workshops and lectures provide opportunities to connect with faculty, residents, postdoctoral and clinical fellows, and other participants. Through the program, students assess goals related to careers in oncology research and patient care. The program culminates with a symposium in which participants present talks and posters on their research projects to peers and faculty.
The program includes the following activities:
- Hands-on investigative scientific research directed by MD Anderson faculty
- Clinical observation in interventional radiology, radiation oncology, breast and melanoma medical oncology, nuclear medicine, and IPCT (Institute for Personalized Cancer Therapy)
- Lectures and workshops designed to expand students' knowledge of scientific fields and medical disciplines
- End-of-program presentation of research projects
- The laboratory and clinical environment at MD Anderson provides a broad range of challenging basic research and clinical projects. Students learn lab safety practices and techniques for gathering, analyzing and presenting scientific data.
- Emphasis is placed on the importance of basic principles that form the foundation for scientific investigation. Students learn about a broad range of subjects in biomedical research.
- MD Anderson faculty mentors design projects that reflect the ongoing research efforts of the institution's laboratories. Students actively participate in the technical aspects of their projects and the interpretation of experimental data.
- Clinical observations expose the students to various areas in oncology for future career decision-making.
- At the conclusion of the program, participants present their summer research project as an academic poster. Students also are eligible to participate in an elevator speech competition.
Students who have completed at least two years of college-level courses in one or more science programs (biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics or computer science) and are in good academic standing are eligible to apply. Applicants must currently be enrolled in an undergraduate program in the United States and be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or international student on F1 or J1 visa to apply.
Students who are considering pursuing an advanced degree (Ph.D., M.D. or both) and are interested in scientific investigation would benefit most from the program.
- Summer Experience 2018 will take place June 5-Aug. 10, 2018.
- MD Anderson's normal hours of operation are Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Exact work schedules are subject to the mentor’s needs and expectations.
Students who have interest in a specific scientific research project should include this information in the Personal Statement area of the application. While we attempt to match students with mentors in accordance with declared interests, this is based on faculty availability and may not be feasible in all circumstances.
Students receive a stipend of $6,000 for the 10-week training period ($600/week). The stipend may change based on actual days worked in a week. Students are expected to pay for housing from these funds. Paychecks are issued on the 5th and the 20th of each month, deducting the required federal tax.
You may apply starting Dec. 1, 2017, through Discover. Applications will be accepted through Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. CST.
The following information will be required on the application:
- Personal information, including contact information and mailing address
- Transcripts from high school and undergraduate universities
- Personal Statement
- Two letters of reference with contact information (At least one reference should come from a science or math professor. The other may be from an advisor, counselor or health care advisor/mentor with whom you worked in a prior program during the past four years.)
Applications must be completed and submitted before the above deadline. Incomplete applications will be purged after the deadline has passed.
If the information found here did not provide the answers you need, check with us to find out the answers to your questions.
Summer Undergraduate Research Program Contacts
What Our Students Say
It was a wonderful program that allowed me to expand my knowledge in science and in the laboratory. Well organized program with fantastic mentors.
Summer Undergraduate Research Program