Summer of Science | Columbia University Irving Medical Center

Other summer programs at CUIMC

Several other summer research and enrichment programs for high school and college students from communities underrepresented in science and medicine were active this summer, including:

Health Professions Summer Program

This simulation-based summer program, new in 2022, aims to improve racial and ethnic diversity in the health care workforce, widely considered a key strategy to combat racial and ethnic disparities in health outcomes. The program hopes to inspire local high school students to pursue careers in the health professions through hands-on experience with medical simulators and in-person meetings with health care professionals.

The program, created by Kellie Bryant, DNP, assistant dean for clinical affairs at Columbia University School of Nursing, and Allison Lee, MD, associate professor of anesthesiology, David Wang, MD, assistant professor of anesthesiology, and Yarisell Hernandez of the Roger Lehecka Double Discovery Center is funded through the Acting on Racism: A Call to Action for Higher Education initiative of the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Advancement.

SHPEP (Summer Health Professions Education Program)

Created by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Summer Health Professions Education Program (SHPEP) is a free six-week summer enrichment and residential program for first- and second-year students interested in health professions. SHPEP in Colombia started in 2001.

SPHSP (Public Health Scholar Summer Program)

The Summer Public Health Scholars Program (SPHSP) is designed for undergraduates and aims to increase interest and knowledge of careers in public health and biomedical sciences. The SPHSP is a partnership of Columbia University’s Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, the College of Dentistry, the School of Nursing, and the Mailman School of Public Health.


The SPURS program, started under the leadership of Dr. Andrew Marks, chair of the Department of Physiology and Cell Biophysics at Columbia University’s Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, brings together students from across the country in campus laboratories for intensive research experiences.

SPURS is in its 21st year and aims to expand the pool of medical and biomedical research applicants from diverse and economically disadvantaged groups whose members have been underrepresented in medicine and biomedical research.

CURE Program at the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center

CURE aims to strengthen the recruitment of students from underrepresented and economically disadvantaged groups, including first-generation students entering cancer-related research fields. Since 2015, the program has facilitated hands-on research experiences in clinical, basic and population sciences in cancer research for high school and undergraduate students.

Program to Inspire Minority and Underserved Students in Environmental Research (PrIMER)

PrIMER is a research program for full-time undergraduate students from backgrounds typically underrepresented in STEM fields. Funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, PrIMER provides research interns from colleges and universities in the New York area with the opportunity to gain valuable research experience in the environmental health sciences.

Biostatistics Epidemiology Diversity Summer Training Program (BEST)

BEST was created to expand and diversify the behavioral and biomedical sciences workforce by introducing students from underrepresented populations to biostatistics and cardiovascular and pulmonary disease research. Students join the Department of Biostatistics at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health for eight weeks of research, training, academic and career planning, and outreach in New York City.

Visit the Office of the Provost website for information about programs in other Columbia schools and departments.

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