3 ways to find internships during summer

Summer may be the time to relax, go to the beach and and bask in the sun’s warmth but sometimes, it is also fun to take up a research project! Right?! Here are 3 ways to find an internship or some kind of project after finishing your first year of Bachelor’s.

Internships over summer are a great way to get valuable experience, they help extend your professional network and make your CV stronger. You start developing professional skills of working in a lab and it can also help you decide whether working in a lab or pursuing a PhD is what you want or not. Being an undergraduate student, it becomes a little difficult to get an internship as priority is given to Master and PhD students. However, here are 3 ways to get research experience over summer.

1. Summer Course in Medical Science

This is a research-preparatory course that is provided by Karolinska Institutet (KI) for undergraduate students. The whole course runs for a total of 7 weeks and is conducted at KI itself. You get to carry on research on a defined subject with the supervision of a researcher and over the weeks also learn a lot of other things. You get introduced to practical lab work, learn how to write a scientific paper, learn forming hypothesis, presentation techniques and a lot more.

There are certain requirements that need to be met in order to apply and you can read more about those on the webpage. (Link provided below) However, another great aspect of this summer course is that it also accounts for 10.5 ECTS and you as a student are granted a research stipend! The course ends with a oral and poster presentation on the research you have conducted. Not only do you get valuable feedback but the experience counts a lot towards your future. The application details are provided on their webpage if you want to read more about it! A few of my fellow classmates have applied to this course and soon I shall interview them for a student perspective. Stay tuned! 🙂

2. iGEM

It stands for International Genetically Engineered Machine and is a global competition for further advancing the field of synthetic biology where safe, innovative applications from the current technologies in biology are used to enhance healthcare. iGEM is an independent, non-profit organization that holds this competition where teams of students from various countries participate. The competition ends with a giant jamboree, the last event, hosted in November at MIT in Boston. This is competition is where students from different fields such as media, finance, mathematics, art and design and of course medical sciences come together and work on a biological or engineering themed projects. This year we have a team representing Stockholm where students from Karolinska Institutet have also take part both from the Biomedicine Bachelor’s/Masters, Bioentrepreneurship and Toxicology Master programmes.

This may not be an internship but more like a research project carried on as a team. You learn how to discuss funding, learn lab techniques needed for the project and have a special role. You either work for the practical lab work or as head of media or manage finances! Yet, at the end of it you manage to get experience where you get to learn about almost everything regarding research work such as funding, marketing, lab work and so on.

Here are a few blogs written highlighting the main aspects of iGEM 2017 by the other DA’s. Make sure to read them!

3. Apply for summer courses/internships in your hometown

This may be a little obvious but if none of the above options seem very appealing then you have another option and that is to hunt for internships yourself! If you cannot attend the above mentioned summer course at KI you can always look for such summer courses in universities back home! Furthermore, a lot of research groups are always willing to offer undergraduate students a chance at carrying out practical research work. You can always contact research groups at universities in your home country. Also, if you know people who work in a lab or a research company you can ask them for an opportunity for an internship as well as one of my friends did.

And as you see there are a lot of chances for an undergraduate student to gain some valuable experience over summer. Stay tuned for some interviews of Bachelor students who did successfully manage to get an internship or research project over this summer!

That’s all for now,

See you around!

Nishi Dave



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