UM-SMART Summer Undergraduate Research Program 2021
The 2021 UM-SMART Program dates are tentatively May 24, 2021 - August 1, 2021. While we are hopeful and planning for an in person program in 2021, due to the uncertain nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the status of the program is currently tentative. The health and safety of UM-SMART participants and our community is of upmost importance. In the event that joining us on campus is not possible, an alternative virtual experience will be offered.
The UM-SMART Summer Undergraduate Research Program offers undergraduate students with a 3.2 cumulative GPA or above an opportunity to spend time working in a basic research lab under the mentorship of a research faculty member. In addition to performing full-time lab research throughout the ten week program, students participate in two half-day physician shadowing experiences in order to gain clinical exposure. Other highlights of the UM-SMART program include: having a “Big Sib” student advisor, receiving comprehensive MCAT study materials, learning about faculty research by attending scientific seminars, participating in poster sessions, and attending the 3-day MSTP annual scientific retreat. Participants receive a $4400 stipend, a food allowance, and double-occupancy dormitory housing on campus.
In order to apply for the UM-SMART program, applicants must be a US Citizen or permanent resident of the US and a current undergraduate sophomore, junior or senior. Applicants belonging to groups that have been traditionally underrepresented in biomedical research are strongly encouraged to apply. This includes individuals from underrepresented racial or ethnic groups, individuals with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, and individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds (such as family annual income below established low-income thresholds, or an educational environment that has inhibited the individual from obtaining the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary to develop and participate in a research career.) Applicants should have completed at least 50 hours of experience in a basic science research lab before June of the year of participation in the program. The research hours requirement has recently been updated to reflect student concerns related to shortened lab experience due to COVID-19 restrictions. Two letters of recommendation are required, at least one of which is submitted by a research mentor or the instructor of a laboratory course.
The UM-SMART program is designed to help undergraduate students decide if a career as a physician-scientist is right for them, and can enhance competitiveness when applying to MD/PhD programs. The 10-week program is aimed at students who have some amount of basic and mechanistic research experience related to medicine. This program is not intended for students seeking clinical research experience on human subjects. Within the UM-SMART program, we do not offer research opportunities in public health, the social sciences or humanities. The UM-SMART program is offered by the University of Michigan Medical Scientist Training Program.