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Summer Program in Epidemiology

2015 Dates TBD - Boston, MA

Hosted by the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics and the Harvard School of Public Health Department of Epidemiology

The four-week Summer Program in Epidemiology is geared toward undergraduate students (and postbaccalaureate students) and integrates mathematics and quantitative methods to provide students with an understanding of the skills and processes necessary to pursue a career in public health.  

The summer program curriculum consists of three parts: introductory coursework in epidemiology and biostatistics; formal lectures, which are provided by faculty members with different foci in epidemiology; and a group research project where students will investigate a question of public health relevance that interests them.  Students who participate in the program are able to meet with students matriculating through various programs at Harvard School of Public Health. In addition, students have the opportunity to meet with faculty and administrators individually, and the chance to explore the city of Boston. Participants receive summer salary, housing, and funded travel.


Students must satisfy all the requirements below:

  • Applicants must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals or permanent residents of the U.S.
  • Applicants must have a GPA of 3.0 or above
  • Applicants must be from a quantitative science background or have taken several quantitative classes beyond intro level courses
  • Applicants must demonstrate an interest in public health
  • Applicants must be from at least one underrepresented group in biomedical research, which is defined by meeting the NIH's criteria below:
    • People with disabilities
    • Racial and ethnic groups such as blacks or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians or other Pacific Islanders.
    • People from disadvantaged and low socioeconomic status
      • Annual family income below established low-income thresholds, based on family size.
      • A rural, inner-city, or other environment that has inhibited a person from getting the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed for a research career.


Individuals interested in pursuing a Doctor of Medicine (MD) are ineligible to apply.  The program is for students interested in pursuing the following degree types: Master of Science (MS), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), or Doctor of Science (ScD).  If you are unsure about degree types, please visit the HSPH Office of Admissions’ website.

Individuals already accepted into a graduate program are ineligible to apply.



You will be asked to provide:
-contact information
-demographic information
-academic information
-2 recommendations -- please provide contact info (title, phone, & email) for the recommenders, and we will email them a link to a secture portal where they can upload their letter.
note: the two letters of recommendation from professors at your current institution who can speak to your capabilities within their courses (please do not request recommendations from high school teachers, or individuals who do not know you in an academic capacity).

You will be asked to upload (in an MS Word or PDF):
-academic transcript(s)
-resume/CV (1 page)
-personal statement (1-2 pages)
note: the personal statement should describe your academic and professional interests, your reason for applying to the Summer Program in Epidemiology, the insight you hope to gain from the program, and the ways the program will influence your academic trajectory. The typed statement should be 1-2 pages.
Qualtrics, the tool we used to make this portal, allows you to save your work and come back to it later. It does this by placing a cookie on your browser that keeps track of your progress. If you clear your history or cache, or do not return to the survey on the same computer, your progress will not be saved. It will also allow you to use back/forward buttons so that you can navigate through the survey & check your work.

HSPH and the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics (CCDD) are committed to helping increase diversity in the field of public health. In addition to our work to financially support those underrepresented groups as defined by the NIH, we actively work to promote inclusion and safe spaces for these and other underrepresented  groups on campus, including LGBTQ people. 

If you have questions about the program please email Outreach Manager, Melanie Larsen