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Student FAQs

Application Process

Q. What role does the mentor play in the Medical Student Summer Research Fellowship? What should I expect from my mentor?

A. Mentors are responsible for the majority of your program and guidance while you are at HSS. Mentors are expected to carry out the following responsibilities:

  1. Meet with the student once a week (a minimum of 4 times during the 8-week session) to discuss the student’s research
  2. Ensure that if he/she personally is unable to meet once a week with the student, another member of the research team will be available to provide guidance regarding the student’s research.
  3. Bring the student to the operating room or office hours (or arrange for the student to shadow a colleague who is an orthopaedic surgeon) at least 4 times during the 8-week session.
  4. Complete the student evaluation at the end of the program

Q. I already have a mentor in mind for the fellowship that I have a previous relationship with. Does my application process differ?

A. Please make sure to indicate your prospective HSS mentor in the designated tab of your online application. We strongly recommend that you submit a letter of recommendation from the prospective mentor as well. Please note that having a prospective HSS mentor does not guarantee admittance to the program. We ask that you do not introduce yourself to faculty members prior to the application deadline in hopes that they will write you a letter. A select group of faculty members participate in the program and they will indicate to us if they have a student in mind.

Q. How are students chosen for the MSSRF?

A. We had over 354 students apply to the MSSRF for 2023. Once filtered by set criteria, the students are divided between a committee of faculty members who then score the applications on additional criteria such as previous research involvement, personal statement, and letter(s) of recommendation. The top 19 students will be selected and notified of their acceptance to the program contingent on matching with a mentor. Students will reach out to their top 2-4 mentors for interviews over the course of a few weeks. Mentors are free to interview as many students as they like, but it is up to the student to reach out to them for an interview. After interviewing, the student will send us his or her mentor preference by early/-mid April. Once all priority lists are reviewed, students and mentors will be matched with priority placement of student preference.

Q. I am coming from out of area and will require housing over the summer. Is housing provided by HSS?

A. Unfortunately HSS cannot provide housing assistance for our medical student summer research fellows. Upon acceptance into the program, we would encourage you use various outside resources to sublet an apartment close to the hospital. In the past, students have used Airbnb, Craigslist, and local university online bulletin boards/postings.



Q. What does a typical day look like in the program? What commitments will I have?

A. You will spend the majority of your time with your mentor or with members of your mentor’s lab. You will be asked to attend mandatory lunch lectures on Mondays from 12:00-1:30 pm and are also invited to attend research lectures on Fridays from 7:15-8:15 am in July and August. At the conclusion of the program you will be expected to give a brief presentation to your other colleagues in the program, as well as your mentor and/or members of your lab.


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