Summer Research Programs for MSI Students

by Aisha Bowen

As the spring semester comes to a close, many college students are looking for summer research opportunities, internships, and jobs. The reason behind seeking opportunities often exceeds money, as students search for opportunities to deepen their knowledge and experience in their desired career field. Interestingly, there are multiple summer research programs for MSI students specifically; many of these programs were created with the purpose of increasing the number of minorities in particular academic fields. As such, today’s MSI Monday Morning Line Up highlights a few summer research opportunities for MSI students.

1) University of BerkeleyHistorically Black College and University Research Experience for Undergraduates


UC Berkeley

The Historically Black College and University Research Experience for Undergraduates was created to increase in the enrollment of African-American graduates from the HBCU partners to engineering and physical science doctoral programs at UC Berkeley or other UC campuses. This research opportunity is house with the UC Berkeley-HBCU (UCB-HBCU) Pathways to the Science and Engineering Doctorate Program, funded by the University of California Office of the President (UCOP). The program runs from June 7th, 2018 – August 11th, 2018. Learn more about this amazing program and applications requirements for future years here

2) U.S. Naval Research LaboratoryNRL Research Internship Program for HBCU/MI/TCU Undergraduates and Graduates

US Naval Research Laboratory

The NRL Research Internship Program provides 10-week research opportunity for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUS), Minority Institutions (MI) and Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCU) planning careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. Research interns are active participants in major research projects and are required to worn a minimum of 40 hours per week under a senior Naval Research Laboratory staff member. Albeit the hard work, perks of the internship include a weekly $850.00 stipend, housing in beautiful Alexandria, VA, and group activities such as DC museum tours, BBQ’s and Washington National’s baseball games. This program runs from May 29th – August 3rd, 2018. Learn more about this amazing program and eligibility requirements here.

3) UCLAHBCU: Evolutionary Medicine: Pathways to Ph.Ds


The HBCU: Evolutionary Medicine-Pathways to Ph.Ds program is a research opportunity for undergraduate juniors and seniors from HBCUs.  Chosen participants will work on Evolutionary Medicine topics at UCLA.  The program website defines Evolutionary Medicine as: the study of how evolutionary and ecological principles affect medicine and medical applications, and how medical and clinical problems generate new research questions and ideas in evolution.  Research interns work closely with a principal investigator (PI) from UCLA’s Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department and a PI from the David Geffen School of Medicine. Learn more about the Evolutionary medicine categories and requirements for this amazing opportunity here.

4) Hampton UniversityMinority Health International Research Training Program (MHIRT)



The MHIRT program at Hampton University is designed to take a selected group of students to to participate in on-going research programs in natural products and environmental health in the following regions on the continent of Africa: the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, Egerton University in Njoro, Kenya, and University of Benin in Benin City, Nigeria. Students’ research in in natural products “typically involves a plant part: root, stem bark, or seeds, which they investigate through an established protocol to isolate chemical compounds.” Environmental health research usually involves assessment and protection of source water. The program began for Hampton students only, but has since then expanded to students in over 120 universities. Learn more about the MHIRT program and eligibility requirements here.

5) U.S. Department of Homeland SecuritySummer Research Team Program

Homeland Security

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security currently offers a ten week research opportunity for early career faculty and up to two students from Minority Serving Institutions (MSI). During this program, the research team conducts research at one of the twelve U.S. Department of Homeland Security Centers of Excellence. The program’s purpose is “to provide research opportunities to increase and enhance the scientific leadership at MSIs in research areas that support the mission and goals of the Department.” While, there are multiple locations throughout the country for this program, Weekly stipends and housing support are available. Learn more about the Summer Research Team Program here.

Know of other summer research opportunities for MSI students? Share in the comments below!

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