As soon as we enter the second and third years of our degrees in a four-year life science course, we are keen to be part of a lab and experience research first-hand. But to do that, it is essential to know where to look, and so in this blog; I will list a few places where international students can apply.
As I say this, please remember that for some of the funding, the criteria might change over time and hence please ensure that you match the eligibility in advance.
When I was in my second year, I needed a more comprehensive understanding of where to apply, and hence I want to present a list of some of the places that might interest you.
- Fortunately, since the University of Dundee has its dedicated drug discovery unit, the first place to look for internships during the summer is in the MRC PPU. Usually, once the application portal is opened, you are notified of it by the programme lead for the respective year. Among the multiple funding offered to the students, the one that is fit for international students is the Wellcome Biomedical Vacation Scholarship Programme. (Please check the criteria in advance for confirmation of eligibility)
- If you are interested in plant science – the second year is an excellent time to attend the Gatsby Summer School (regarding which a Gatsby mentor will inform you). https://www.slcu.cam.ac.uk/gatsby-plant-science-education-programme/GPSSS
- Carrying onto this, in the third year, you can look into Sainsbury’s Undergraduate Studentships. These expect you to find a host lab within the UK in which you will work on a research project for 10-12 weeks. They expect you to design a brief research proposal with the host lab. https://www.gatsby.org.uk/plant-science/programmes/sainsbury-undergraduate-studentships
- The best way to look for internships, specifically in the second year, is to look into the different scientific societies that are UK-wide! For example, the studentships are listed at: https://www.rsb.org.uk/get-involved/grants/undergraduate-studentships! Keep an eye on these to know the deadlines and the tasks that need to be done as part of the application process.
- Another place to look for summer placements is https://www.crick.ac.uk/careers-study/students/summer-students.
- Another place to look into for plant enthusiasts would be https://www.jic.ac.uk/training-careers/summer-schools/international-undergraduate/!
You need to keep an eye on these pages throughout your degree for any updates but be more vigilant during November- February, as this is when most application portals open!
Apart from these, there are many other opportunities, so be inquisitive and talk to people around – peers, professors, and career services. They might be able to inform you of what to look into for a summer placement!
I hope this helps! Best of luck with your applications!
Thank you for reading!