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Become a Summer Intern

The Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG) offers a summer research internship for students interested in exploring careers in cancer epidemiology, biostatistics, and genetics. The program is open to high school, college, post-baccalaureate masters-level students, and graduate students, including medical and dental students. Successful applicants join the Division for at least 8 weeks between May and September. Under the supervision of a Division researcher, summer interns conduct research in selected areas of epidemiologic or genetic investigation. Interns are encouraged to attend lectures offered under the NIH Summer Seminar Series, participate in DCEG meetings and seminars, attend formal NIH lectures and symposia, and participate in the NIH Summer Research Program Poster Day and the DCEG Poster Day.

Why Study Epidemiology?

Epidemiology is often called the science of public health. It is described as the study of the distribution and determinants of disease risk in human populations. Epidemiologists study a diverse range of health conditions as well as the impact that various exposures have on the manifestation of disease. DCEG research has had tremendous impact on public health.

DCEG Research Portfolio

Epidemiology and Biostatistics Research

DCEG researchers work on a variety of population studies and develop novel analytic techniques. Our investigators serve as invaluable mentors to interns on a wide range of research topics. Read more on our Principal Investigators page.

Laboratory Research

DCEG offers a limited number of summer laboratory research positions, mostly in the Laboratory of Translational Genomics. Students who are interested in laboratory research should also visit the NIH Research and Training website for information about research at other NIH institutes.

Specific Research Areas

Biostatistics

  • Descriptive studies to characterize cancer trends
  • Analysis of large-scale data sets
  • Statistical models for predicting cancer risk

Clinical Genetics

  • Cancer predisposition syndromes
  • Genetic modifiers of cancer risk
  • Telomere biology disorders

Genetic Epidemiology

  • Family cancer studies
  • Pharmacogenetic studies
  • Population genetics

Hormonal and Reproductive Epidemiology

  • Hormonally-related tumors
  • Measurement of circulating hormones
  • Risk factors for hormone-related cancers

Infections and Immunoepidemiology

  • Prospective cohorts at high risk of AIDS
  • Oncogenic viruses
  • Immunosuppression and cancer

Nutritional Epidemiology

  • Gastrointestinal cancers
  • Energy balance /obesity
  • Dietary intake and micronutrients

Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology

  • Pesticides and agricultural exposures
  • Industrial chemicals
  • Environmental exposures
  • Exposure assessment

Radiation Epidemiology

  • Medical radiation exposures
  • Occupational radiation exposures
  • Environmental radiation exposures
  • Radiation dosimetry

Translational Genomics

  • Relationship of germline genetic variation to cancer
  • Detection and mapping of cancer susceptibility alleles
  • Bioinformatic analyses of genetic variants

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the application process start?
The application process begins in mid-November and ends on March 1st.

How long is a summer internship?
A typical summer internship lasts 8 to 10 weeks with a minimum requirement of 8 weeks. There is some flexibility depending on the student's schedule.

When does the summer internship start and end?
The internship begins in late May or early June and ends in August or September, but exact dates depend on the student's and the mentor's schedules.

Is the summer internship a paid position?
Yes. Summer interns receive a stipend based on academic level.

Where is the Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG) located?
DCEG is located on the NCI Shady Grove campus at 9609 Medical Center Drive, Rockville, Maryland, 20850. Parking is available at the building.  Public transportation, using a combination of Metro and NCI shuttle bus, is also available. The closest Metro stop is “Shady Grove” on the Red Line, from which NCI shuttle buses run regularly to the NCI campus. Find more transportation information.

Where do summer interns live?
There are a variety of housing options in the surrounding area, including Rockville and Bethesda, Maryland, and Washington, DC. Find housing information.