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The Geisinger Clinic Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) provides an exceptional opportunity for undergraduate students to conduct research under the mentorship of our nationally and internationally recognized scientists. This program is designed for undergraduates with a strong background in the sciences who are considering a career in biomedical research. Participants experience the joy of scientific discovery as well as the challenges inherent in scientific research while developing skills in scientific reasoning, research methods and scientific communication through interaction with our research staff.

Internships are available in the following areas:

Autism & Developmental Medicine Institute – Students will participate in ongoing and novel research projects that align with ADMI’s innovative approach to investigating the causes and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders. Research is conducted across a variety of disciplines including genetics, neuroscience, psychology, developmental medicine and high-performance computing. Opportunities to shadow our clinicians including psychologists, behavior analysts, genetic counselors, developmental pediatricians and speech-language pathologists are also provided.

Center for Pharmacy Innovation and Outcomes – Students will gain insight into the sciences of implementation, dissemination, health services and outcomes research. Focus will be on population health pharmacy, medication optimization, adherence and pharmacy services. Past projects included the evaluation of naloxone prescribing, understanding the process of medication reconciliation in community medicine and evaluating pharmacists activities as part of an at-home team-based care program. The expectations are that students will participate actively in the conduct of investigation, bring a positive attitude to the team and present materials in a summer-end symposium. Outstanding students will have the opportunity to publish research conducted. Those students with interest in data analysis, health services evaluation, qualitative and/or quantitative evaluations are encouraged to apply.

Genomic Medicine Institute – Students will work with the genomics team including MDs, PhDs and genetic counselors to develop a summer project in clinical genomics with the option to choose from a variety of research opportunities. Students will have the option to complete some job shadowing of genetic counselors or clinical geneticists as part of the internship experience.

Molecular and Functional Genomics – Some students will be assigned to work with bench scientists investigating topics in functional genomics, developmental biology or cell signaling using advanced methods in cellular and molecular biology. Other students will use computational approaches and existing genomic and clinical data to investigate the role of genetic variation in health and disease. This work will use a database of 92,000 exome sequences to identify genes and genetic variants associated with specific clinical traits captured from electronic health records. Students will be assigned a specific project and will provide a summary report at the end of the summer.

The Geisinger Clinic SURP is competitive, with acceptance based on grades, test scores, recommendations and stated career goals. You may apply if you are currently a sophomore or junior in a four-year college or university. No previous research experience is required; however, applicants should have taken appropriate course work prior to application.

Program features:

  • College undergraduate sophomores, juniors and seniors and pharmacy students in their first two professional years are encouraged to apply.
  • Paid program: $11.50/hr., 40 hours per week, Tuesday, June 1, 2021 – Friday, Aug. 6, 2021
  • To the degree possible, students are matched with research programs according to their stated interest and work on projects under the direct supervision of our staff and faculty.
  • Students are selected from diverse academic backgrounds. Past participants represent more than 150 colleges and universities in over 30 states.
  • Students may be provided opportunities to develop critical thinking skills through participation in a weekly journal club.
  • Students participate in workshops on ethical issues in research.

Interested students should send the application form and all required materials in one complete packet to Lisa Farr at

Applications will be accepted 12/15/20 – 2/15/21. Late submission will not be considered.

(Letters of recommendation do not have to be included in the complete packet. They may come directly from the professor/academic advisor to Lisa Farr via email.)
For additional SURP information and applicant material requirements, visit