About the Fellowship
How does the program work? Summer Research Fellows are each assigned to a mentor. The mentor may be a health or research professional from any department in our health system. Under the mentor’s guidance, and with the help of Department of Research support staff, Fellows complete a research project. At the end of the summer, Fellows present their findings in a PowerPoint at a noon conference attended by staff, Fellowship benefactors, and invited friends and family. Project results are commonly submitted for presentation at regional and national conferences, and the project abstracts are often published in conference proceedings.
What do Summer Research Fellows do? In the first week or so, fellows usually do a fair amount of searching the literature to acquaint themselves with the chosen topic before beginning the real work. What you do after that depends upon the project your mentor has chosen for you. Past Fellows have collected data from paper and electronic patient medical records, administered and analyzed surveys, and conducted laboratory research.
Do I get to choose my area of research? While you will be asked to express your preferences, placement will depend upon mentor availability, your completion of relevant classes, and your interview. Past Fellows have worked in obstetrics & gynecology, general surgery, bariatric surgery, cardiology, hematology-oncology, radiology, community & preventive care services, nursing, microbiology research laboratory, bereavement & advance care planning services, and neurosurgery, to name some of the most popular areas.
I’m in/thinking of applying to medical school. Will I be able to shadow physicians in various specialties? Yes, subject to scheduling availability, Fellows are allowed a maximum of one (1) shadow experience per week.
How do I apply? Each year, usually in mid November, Summer Research Fellow positions for the following year are posted under the “Interns/Fellows” category on Gundersen Health System’s Employment page. You will be asked to complete an online application, and you will need to arrange to have an official transcript and a letter of recommendation sent to the Research Manager.
Eligible candidates will have completed their junior year by the end of the spring semester proceeding the Fellowship summer and will have a grade point average of at least 3.2. You will also be asked to write and submit a goals statement.
Online applications are due in early February, with all supplemental materials (transcript, goals statement, letter of recommendation) to be received by mid February. Please consult the online application when it is posted for exact due dates.
When will applicants be notified? Interviews will be conducted in March, with final selection to be made by mid April. Interviews are preferred in person but, at our discretion, exceptions might be made for candidates for whom a long trip would be a hardship.