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How do I Choose the Best Summer Research Fellowship?

Article Details
  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 19 July 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2019
    Conjecture Corporation
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You'll likely have a number of factors to consider when you are trying to choose the best summer research fellowship. One of the most important factors, however, is how much real-world research experience you will gain. When you are comparing programs, it may be best to choose one that offers access to mentors and significant stipend amounts. Likewise, you should look for a program that offers modern labs, state-of-the-art equipment, and opportunities to collaborate with respected scientists. Additionally, you might consider the experiences of other students when attempting to choose a program.

One of the things to consider when choosing the best summer research fellowship is whether or not you will have the opportunity to do real research. Projects that are created just for practice may provide helpful learning experiences, but you will likely learn more if you have the opportunity to work on a real project. Likewise, a real-world project might provide a good addition to your resume or transcript. Additionally, you may appreciate the satisfaction of knowing your research might actually make a difference.

You may also find it beneficial to choose a summer research fellowship in which you will have access to mentors. You can learn a good deal from students who are further along on their educational paths than you are as well as from post-doctoral fellows and doctors. These people may help enhance your learning experiences and possibly provide valuable advice.

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Stipends may also prove important when you are trying to choose the best summer research fellowship. Generally, such stipends are not intended to make you richer, but they should help sustain you financially through the program. For example, your stipend may provide enough money to pay for housing and food. You might also find programs that offer high enough stipends to provide money for your travel expenses.

The opportunities you will have during a summer research fellowship will likely matter a good deal when you are trying to make the best selection. For example, you may best search for a fellowship that affords you the opportunity to work in a modern facility with state-of-the-art equipment. You may also prefer a fellowship that provides the chance to collaborate with scientists who are known and respected on both a national and international level.

Often, learning about other people's experiences will also prove important when you are trying to choose the best summer research fellowship. You can ask individuals who have participated in a fellowship in the past to share their experiences and fill you in on what they think are important considerations. They may even share the pros and cons of the particular program in which they participated.

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