Summer Research Program

Summer Research Program

The IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center Summer Research Program (SRP) aims to increase the number of high school and undergraduate students from underrepresented populations pursuing biomedical and behavioral science careers by providing positive and meaningful firsthand exposure to these fields.

Update regarding the 2021 Program

Because of the restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, in 2020 students were offered a virtual-only research experience. Students are encouraged to start the application process for the 2021 program knowing that it may be in-person or virtual. It may not be until the end of March 2021 that the university announces directives for summer programs. By the time the selection process has been finished in early April, the type of program — in-person or virtual — will be determined.

Selected participants will be paired with a research mentor. Research projects may involve laboratory-based research, computer-based database research or clinical research. Students will learn about research methodology and will complete a project over the summer months. They will present their findings at poster as well as oral presentation sessions. Applicants are expected to actively participate in all aspects of the program, including various professional development sessions.

During the six-week program (June 14-July 23, 2021), participants work 40 hours each week. Full-time attendance of 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. is mandatory throughout the program’s duration.

Note: Participants are responsible for their own housing and transportation arrangements. 

Benefits of Participating in SRP

As an SRP participant, you will:

  • Interact with one of the cancer center research programs, shared facilities and more than 100 world-renowned investigators
  • Gain exposure to a wide range of basic science, translational and clinical research activities
  • Continually interact with and learn from other students, clinical and post-doctoral fellows and faculty
  • Attend weekly workshops that deal with issues related to gaining admission to graduate and professional programs of study
  • Receive a stipend (payment)
Who Should Apply?

The Summer Research Program (SRP) is designed to serve students from populations underrepresented in biomedical and clinical research in the summer after the senior year in high school or the summer after undergraduate years 1 or 2. To learn more about the National Institutes of Health (NIH) definitions of populations underrepresented in biomedical and clinical research, visit

Although most past participants have resided in the metropolitan Indianapolis area, the program accepts applications from students all across the United States. 

The following students are eligible. Medical students and residents are not eligible.

High school students currently in grade 12 who...
  • Have completed their senior year by the program’s start date.
  • Display an aptitude for science and math.
  • Have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Undergraduate students who...
  • Have completed 2 years or less, and not over 80 credit hours.
  • Have a biomedical or behavioral science major.
  • Have a cumulative GPA of 3.2 or higher.
How Do I Apply?

Applications are now open until Feb. 14, 2021.

Important Dates:

  • Application deadline: Feb. 14, 2021
  • Acceptance notifications: April 1, 2021
  • Program dates: June 14-July 23, 2021

Contact Elmer Sanders, program coordinator, at