Monell Science Apprenticeship Program (MSAP)

Posted by Monell Chemical Senses Center on November 7, 2016

If you are interested in gaining experience working in a lab, collecting data and presenting your findings – in short, learning what it’s like to be a scientist – then the Monell Science Apprenticeship Program (MSAP) is for you!

We are looking for highly motivated high school and undergraduate students in the Philadelphia area for a seven-week intensive paid internship that provides the opportunity to directly participate in basic research. The mission of our program is to provide mentorship to students, with a special interest in providing this opportunity to students who are from groups typically under-represented in STEM fields, including women, ethnic and racial minorities and those from low income households.

The Monell Center is a basic research institute furthering scientific discovery on the chemical senses (taste and smell). Each summer, we offer a group of approximately twenty students the unique opportunity to work alongside our scientists and learn more about careers in research – in other words, it is a true apprenticeship. Students are asked to meet the challenges of serious research responsibilities while contributing to projects at the forefront of scientific research. Past projects that MSAP students have worked on include cloning the olfactory receptors; investigating flavor preferences in infants, children and the elderly; developing non-lethal repellants for agricultural pests; and studying the chemistry of air quality and how it influences people’s health perceptions. Students will work with human subjects, animal subjects, and/or data. As you apply, you should put some thought into what type of work most interests you, and indicate that on the application and in your personal essay — this can strengthen your application.

In addition to working on a research project, the program provides students with a weekly seminar series, including special guest lecturers from the broader scientific community, on a wide range of topics relevant to aspiring scientific researchers. At the end of the summer, students present their research findings in poster presentation format for family, friends, community members and Monell faculty and staff at the much anticipated Capstone Symposium.

We are excited to extend this opportunity and look forward to reviewing your application. You can learn more about what we do at Monell on our website:

Dates: Monday June 26th through Friday August 11th

The deadline for all application materials is December 15th, 2016 January 16, 2017.

Work Schedule: Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. (35 Hours per week, with a 1 hour unpaid lunch break).
To be eligible for MSAP, you must:

  • Be currently enrolled in a high school or undergraduate institution. Students from the greater Philadelphia area are strongly encouraged to apply. Unfortunately we are unable to offer positions to students who will have graduated from college before July 2017, and students who are in 8th grade during the 2016-2017 school year.
  • Be able to prove eligibility to work in the United States
  • Have a strong interest in science and research and a desire to learn!

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