Summer Undergraduate Internship Program in Clinical and Translational Research

The Clinical and Translational Sciences Award (CTSA) at the University of Pennsylvania sponsors a summer undergraduate internship program that provides mentored experiences in clinical and translational sciences to students from Bryn Mawr College, Franklin & Marshall College, Haverford College, Lincoln University, Swarthmore College, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Puerto Rico. Internships are 10 weeks in duration and start May 29, 2019 and end August 2, 2019. Stipends are $3,900, and the program provides housing on the University of Pennsylvania campus.

The application for Summer 2019 is closed. The application for Summer 2020 opens 12/1/19.

About the Internship

About the internship

Translational research refers to the attainment and transfer of new knowledge from the bench to the clinic — and from the clinic to the bench. Basic scientists provide clinicians with new tools for the diagnosis and treatment of patients and for assessment of impact. Clinical researchers make novel observations about the nature and progression of disease that engage basic investigators. Translational research is viewed as a medium for discoveries to be translated into practical diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

The CTSA-sponsored internship provides a substantial, mentored experience in translational and clinical approaches to understanding a disease and developing effective therapeutic modalities. The project may take many forms, with an emphasis on, for example, molecular biology, genetics, epidemiology, bioinformatics, or clinical interventions. The project may or may not involve work at the bench; however, it is usually linked to an established project and requires close interactions with personnel within the mentor's group. The internship also consists of several hours each week devoted to the summer internship seminar series highlighting methodologies in translational research and providing time for interns to share their scientific progress with the rest of the group. The internship culminates with a final symposium which involves a presentation describing the project in terms of the question asked, information obtained, and placement of the work within the larger context of clinical and translational research efforts.

Close section



  • Applicants must currently attend Bryn Mawr College, Franklin & Marshall College, Haverford College, Lincoln University, Swarthmore College, the University of Pennsylvania, or the University of Puerto Rico.
  • Students applying for the CTSA Summer Undergraduate Internship Program must have completed one year of college.
  • Preference will be given to students finishing sophomore or junior years.
  • Students must participate in the entire 10-week program and attend all programmatic events.
  • Students must demonstrate an interest and potential to pursue a career in the clinical or translational sciences.

Close section

Application Requirements

Application Requirements

 The 2019 application is closed. The 2020 application opens 12/1/19.

Online Internship Application

  • The internship program applications are found under “Perelman School of Medicine Masters Programs”
  • Select: “CTSA Undergraduate Internship, non-degree”
  • Select "Summer 2019" term.

Materials required for a completed application include:

  • Application form which includes
    • Statement of personal interests and goals
    • Two letters of recommendation (submitted by the recommenders within the system)
    • Unofficial copy of transcript

Statement of personal interests and goals

The personal statement should provide information regarding the student's interests and career goals. A discussion of scientific or clinical interests is important, of course, but that of other interests and experiences is useful as well. The CTSA leadership is most interested in how an exposure to clinical and translational sciences, such as that offered by the internship, relates to the student's educational and career objectives. Students may, if they wish, describe areas of potential topics for the internship in the statement, but this is not necessary as interests will be fully explored following acceptance. The statement should be 500–1000 words.

Letters of recommendation

Letters of recommendation should be provided by two individuals familiar with the student's academic capabilities and potential for work in a biomedical setting. The recommendations should be uploaded by the recommenders to the application system. Students will have the ability to send the link within the system.

Acceptance into the Program

The application closes Friday, February 8, 2019. Applications will be evaluated by CTSA leadership in consultation with the relevant undergraduate institution. Applicants will be notified by the end of March regarding the selection committee's decision.

We anticipate 12 CTSA internships for summer of 2019.

Close section

Contact Us

For general questions related to the internship, please contact Carsten Skarke, MD, Director, CTSA Undergraduate Program.

Close section

Former CTSA Summer Undergraduate Interns 

Internship Experiences

Read more about prior ITMAT summer interns and their experience with the internship program here.

Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act

The federal Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act, as amended, requires colleges and universities to provide information related to security policies and procedures and specific statistics for criminal incidents, arrests, and disciplinary referrals to students and employees, and to make the information and statistics available to prospective students and employees upon request.  The Campus SaVE Act of 2013 expanded these requirements to include information on and resources related to crimes of interpersonal violence, including dating violence, domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault. Federal law also requires institutions with on-campus housing to share an annual fire report with the campus community. 

In addition, the Uniform Crime Reporting Act requires Pennsylvania colleges and universities to provide information related to security policies and procedures to students, employees and applicants; to provide certain crime statistics to students and employees; and to make those statistics available to applicants and prospective employees upon request. 

To review the University’s most recent annual report containing this information, please visit: or

You may request a paper copy of the report by calling the Office of the Vice President for Public Safety and Superintendent of Penn Police at 215-898-7515 or by emailing

Close section