College of Sciences encourages students to plan their approach in exploring options of internship and undergraduate research. Doing an internship or participating in undergraduate research not only gives you a sense for what certain careers are like, but also provides valuable experience to include in your job and graduate school applications.
Preparing for a Career in STEM Regardless of whether you intend to get a job or pursue graduate studies after you graduate, you will find yourself in a competitive market. Doing an internship or participating in undergraduate research not only gives you a sense for what certain careers are like, but also provides valuable experience to include in your job and graduate school applications.
- Many companies hiring STEM majors list prior work experience related to the position as a minimum or preferred qualification.
- Graduate programs now routinely ask about undergraduate research experiences and research publications as part of the application process.
Paid versus credit-bearing internships
Both paid internships and credit-bearing internships provide valuable work experience in preparation for a future career. You should not assume that companies without established internship programs are not open to hiring interns. Such companies may still be interested in having an intern, particularly if the student is receiving college credit for the internship rather than monetary compensation.
Within the College of Sciences, program specific internship requirements and guidelines can be found:
Students interested in pursuing graduate studies in any STEM-related field or intending to work in a research laboratory after graduation are strongly encouraged to seek out research opportunities, ideally in their junior year. Such opportunities are also valuable experiences for math and science teaching majors.
Working with your faculty advisor once you’ve been accepted into STEM major, it’s good to share with them your post graduate academic plans and research interests. Within the College of Sciences, research options depend on major program/discipline of study and can be done on or off campus.
Many faculty in the College of Science are working on research projects and would be very interested in supervising undergraduate students. Talk with faculty in your program to discuss research options and how to incorporate it towards degree completion and future post-graduate academic planning.
Explore some of these STEM off campus research options and work with your faculty advisor on next steps to apply and get credit for your research experience.
- National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates
- Howard Hughes Medical Institute HHMI (science research)
- National Institute of Health (science research) NIEHS summer research internship
- Stanford Research Internships for Students from Other Schools Stanford U science outreach
- University of Minnesota Medical School Life Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Program (LSSURP)
- Research internships in Neuroscience at UMN (contact Professor Cindy Harley)
- Air Force Research Labs