Summer Research Experience in Aging and Neurological Diseases

February 6, 2018

The Harvey A. Friedman Center for Aging at the Institute for Public Health is offering an eight-week summer research program with opportunities for undergraduate students to develop experience in research and aging.

Program Overview

The eight-week full-time immersive summer research experience is available for up to 10 undergraduate students who are interested in exploring opportunities in research on aging. Through this program, students will have the opportunity to learn about three neurological conditions and diseases that often interplay with the aging process: stroke, Parkinson’s disease, and dementia and gain experience working in research labs and centers focused on these issues.

Accepted students will:

  • Gain exposure to top investigators and diverse research topics. Accepted students are matched with a faculty mentor and will spend eight weeks, beginning June 5, up to 32 hours as part of their mentor’s research team. Students will also participate in weekly workshops taught by faculty and instructors affiliated with Washington University.
    • Participants are expected to participate in all daytime activities in this program, 40 hours per week, Monday through Friday.
  • Receive an orientation that covers both the health-related issues and an introduction to research approaches to ensure all students have a useful level of background knowledge to supplement their research placement experience.
  • Have opportunities to build a social network with student peers, faculty, and staff.
  • Receive a $3,200 stipend and a Metrolink transit pass (for non-WashU students)

Applicant Eligibility

  • Applicants must have completed at least two semesters of undergraduate work by the start of the program on June 5.
    • This program is only open to students who are working on an undergraduate degree at the time of our summer program; we are not accepting May 2018 graduates. Graduate, professional, or medical students are also not eligible. If you are intending to graduate from your program in May 2018 and would like assistance on finding other research opportunities, feel free to contact us at
  • Students attending universities and colleges in the St. Louis Metropolitan Region will receive priority. Students from other institutions may also apply.
    • The St. Louis Metro Region is made up of counties in Missouri (Franklin, Jefferson, Lincoln, St. Charles, St. Louis, City of St. Louis, Warren, and Washington) and Illinois (Bond, Calhoun, Clinton, Jersey, Macoupin, Madison, Monroe, and St. Clair).
  • Our research program is open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents only. Due to grant restrictions, we are unable to fund students who are not citizens or permanent residents.
  • Students with backgrounds and experiences traditionally underrepresented among researchers are strongly encouraged to apply.
    • This includes students who identify as Black or African American, Hispanic or Latino, American Indian, Alaska Native, Hawaiian Native, first-generation college, women, military veterans, living with a disability, and/or have experienced substantial economic obstacles.
  • Previous research experience is not required. We are looking for students who are interested in exploring opportunities in research and aging fields.


  • Completed applications due March 16 at the end of the day.
  • Program will run from June 5-July 27, 2018.
    • Students are expected to participate in the program full-time, Monday through Friday.

Application Package

Applicants must submit the following by the application deadline:

  • Completed Application Form
  • Personal Statement (max length 2 pages)
    • Submit one original essay describing the following: What specific influences have made you interested in this summer research experience? What do you hope to gain from this experience? If you have done research in the past (not required for this program) briefly describe the project you worked on and how the experience is driving your current interests.
    • This essay should be uploaded as a PDF when you complete your application.
  • At least one supportive recommendation letter. References must be an instructor, professor, academic advisor, sponsor of an activity or club in which you currently participate, or other individual affiliated with your current college with whom you have worked.
    • Letters should be submitted by the reference to Applicants are responsible for ensuring the reference letter is submitted on time.

Please direct questions and requests for applications to Stephanie Herbers, Friedman Center Manager, at or 314-747-9234.

This program is supported by a grant from the National Institute on Neurological Disorders and Stroke via the NIH Summer Research Education Experience Programs funding opportunity (PI: Carpenter, 1R25NS100133-01A1).