Research Opportunities
Summer Research Programs

All of the summer research programs on this page are well established and typically include a stipend.

Application due dates are early (from November to February) and enrollment is fairly competitive. Be sure to start your applications early.

Although some program names may imply a required specialization, many programs are interdisciplinary and accept students from a wide range of backgrounds. 

Program details change frequently so be sure to double check each program's website for more information.

For more information and general advice, consider participating in our Peer Advising in Research program, where you can talk to experienced undergraduate researchers in various fields.

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Northwestern Summer Research Programs

These programs are open to any eligible college undergraduate. Some Northwestern students have enrolled in these programs, but most Northwestern students doing summer research at NU go through a more informal process of approaching individual professors.

Paid Research Opportunities at NU Physical Sciences-Oncology Center

The NU Physical Sciences-Oncology Center is funded by the National Cancer Institute and uses physical sciences-based approaches to understand the molecular changes leading to cancer. The 8-week program includes hands-on laboratory research, weekly seminars in tumor biology, and two two-day workshops.

Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC)

Applicants work under a Center faculty on an available project that best matches the student’s research interests. Research topics include polymers and polymer nanocomposites, multifunctional metal oxides, nanowires and molecular electronics, biologically relevant materials, art conservation, device fabrication, and computational modeling. This is an REU program.

Summer Research Opportunity (SROP)

The mission of SROP has been to increase diversity among students pursuing graduate education and to provide a valuable academic research experience for many students who might not otherwise have access to such opportunities. Each student selected to participate in the program will work with a faculty member in the student's area of interest. An Early Admission Decision Program exists, and course credit is available.

Continuing Umbrella of Research Experience (CURE)

CURE gives underserved college students the opportunity to work alongside top cancer researchers at the Lurie Comprehensive Research Center in downtown Chicago.

McCormick Summer Research Awards

McCormick recognizes and encourages excellence in undergraduate research by holding a competition for awards of up to $5,000 each for qualifying undergraduate summer research.

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Non-Northwestern Summer Research Programs

The details and application requirements for summer research programs change frequently. Please contact the McCormick Office of Undergraduate Engineering to learn about current opportunities for summer research outside of Northwestern.

You can also take advantage of McCormick's Peer Advising in Research program to get more information about recent student experiences doing summer research. 

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Study Abroad Summer Research Programs

DAAD (Germany) - Research Internships in Science and Engineering (RISE)

RISE is a summer internship program for undergraduate students from the United States, Canada, and the UK, in the fields of biology, chemistry, physics, earth sciences and engineering to do research in top universities/institutions across Germany. DAAD provides various kinds of scholarships to intern and do research in Germany. Most of the scholarships are for summer period, but some allow three-month or year-long internships. Check eligibility requirements carefully.

The ThinkSwiss Research Scholarships

A scholarship offered through a program facilitated by the Swiss Embassy. Undergraduates and graduate applicants across the US compete for 15 research scholarships, to help support their research at a Swiss university. Applicants need to be accepted to a laboratory/research center in Switzerland prior to their application.