Section Navigation: Special Study Options
- Accelerated Master's Programs
- Math Boot Camp
- K-12 STEM Programs
- Learning Community
- STEM Bridge Experience
- Learning Assistants
- Aspiring Scientists Summer Internship Program
- Study Abroad
Section Navigation: Aspiring Scientists Summer Internship Program
Gain original, cutting-edge research experience
The nationally known Aspiring Scientists Summer Internship Program (ASSIP) provides transformative research opportunities for high school and undergraduate students. Selected participants work one-on-one with faculty researchers at George Mason University and collaborating institutions using state-of-the-art technology across many disciplines.
View most 2019-2023 ASSIP abstracts in the Mason Journal of Student Scientists Research. Some mentors have published ASSIP intern research elsewhere.
The 2024 ASSIP Application is now closed
What's next for 2024 ASSIP applicants? 2024 ASSIP applications will be processed during February 2024. In early March, prospective mentors will review their applications and select some applicants for interviews. Mentors' offers will be extended by the first week in April. All applicants will receive notification of their status during the second week of April.
Interested in Mason STEM and STEM-related research? Join us for our free, interactive monthly Galileo's Science Cafe research speaker and dinner series!
As part of your 8-week (June 18th-Aug. 9th, 2024), full-time ASSIP internship, you will:
- Gain hands-on experience using cutting-edge sophisticated equipment and technologies,
- Develop and exercise scientific writing and communication skills
- Explore STEM career choices through discussion forums and meetings with role models
- Develop and exercise creative skills, crucial to performing innovative research
For the summer of 2024, ASSIP internships will be offered in fully remote, fully in-person, or hybrid (some days remote and some days in-person) formats. Mentors determine which formats fit their intern's project needs. On the prospective 2024 ASSIP Mentors page, mentors detail the expected internship format in their group.
Minimum ages: Interns for remote internships must be 15 years or older by June 18th, 2024. Internships for in-person or hybrid internships in computer labs must be 15 years or older by June 18th, 2024. (This is a change from previous years).
Interns for "wet-lab" in-person or hybrid internships must be 16 or older by June 18, 2024. This is a requirement by Mason Environmental Health and Safety and no exceptions can be made. "Wet labs" are those in which chemicals, biohazards, mechanical or electrical risks, or other risks may be present.
Maximum age: There is no maximum age limit, as long as the applicant has not graduated from university before or during their internship.
Benefits of summer research internships and tips on applying to ASSIP:
A significant body of data supports the importance of STEM students engaging in summer research experiences. Summer-long research allows students to make meaningful contributions to society at a young age, and to participate in STEM practices that promote student STEM content understanding, skills, and STEM self-identity and self-efficacy. Summer research experiences contribute to STEM student persistence in a college degree which can, in turn, lead to fascinating, meaningful, and well-paying careers.
Hard work may pay off with participants' names published in scientific journals and their work presented at scientific conferences. Scientific areas of focus include astronomy, proteomics and molecular medicine, chemistry and biochemistry, drug discovery, bioengineering, STEM-related business/finance and entrepreneurships, sustainable botany, environmental science and policy, forensic science, geography, geographic information, and spatial sciences, neuroscience, mathematical modeling, physics, atmospheric, oceanic and earth sciences, climate change, biology, disease diagnostics, STEM education, nanoscience, renewable energy, computer simulations, computer modeling, machine learning, cybersecurity, data mining, data science for social good, women's health issues, infectious disease and epidemiology, game design and serious games, tissue repair and regeneration, coastal flooding, urban hydrology, civil engineering, human-computer interactions, software engineering, bioelectronic interfaces and assistive technology, wireless security, materials failure, micro-/nano-manufacturing, robotics, psychology and neuroscience of human interactions and learning, solar space weather, exoplanet discovery, planetary atmospheres and life, evolutionary molecular ecology, bird populations, scientific business and enterprise, and more!
To provide research opportunities for as many students as possible, we do not pay ASSIP interns or mentors. However, there is no charge required for students to participate in the Aspiring Scientists Summer Internship Program except for the $25 application fee (which may be waived based on financial need). See details on the application page to obtain the waiver, if needed, before you apply.
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
"My experience at ASSIP for the last two summers was probably the most beneficial and impactful experience I have had in my life so far. It taught me how to be a better scientist and engineer, how to develop new ideas, and how to make those ideas a reality. I accomplished a lot that I never thought I was capable of doing as a high school student such as filing for three patents and inventing new technologies to be used by companies to help others. The ability to see that my work has the capability of helping others and that I can make a difference, even as a high school student, has given me the confidence I need to continue innovating."