About the Internship and Application Process


The application deadline for Summer 2017 has now passed. Check back in the fall for the Summer 2018 application.


The Columbia University Research Cluster on Science and Subjectivity (Center for Science and Society) offers research internship positions to motivated undergraduate students such that they may have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in the field of medicine. In addition to shadowing clinicians and following patients, students have the opportunity to develop a project of interest at the Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center, a long-term care skilled nursing facility sponsored by the Archdiocese of New York and affiliated with New York Medical College.

The RCSS-TCC Clinical-Based Internship for Pre-Medical Students is a full-time (40 hours/week), 10-week summer internship from the beginning of June through the beginning of August at a local skilled nursing facility, Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center. 

Interns engage in experiential learning and perform quality of care and/or clinical research projects related to the care of the dying (palliative care). The internship places focus on learning through adopting and following the cases of individual patients, as well as through communicating with different levels of clinical staff. Throughout their time at TCC interns will learn about how palliative care is distinct from end of life care. Students conduct independent study projects under the guidance of medical staff and their fellow interns. All interns are required to write a final report and to present their work to the RCSS. Interns receive a stipend of $4000. Housing is not included.

ELIGIBILITY: You may apply if you are currently a pre-med sophomore or junior student in Columbia College, Barnard College, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, or the School of General Studies. 

You must have a particular interest in working with people during the last few weeks or months of life. An interest in bioethics would be expected, but is not required. The internship is competitive, with awards based on grades, previous experience, and personal statement. The most competitive applicants will be invited for a personal interview. No previous research experience is necessary and all majors are welcome to apply.

WHERE: Students will be immersed in day-to-day life at the Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center (TCC) at 1249 Fifth Avenue between 105th and 106th Streets. 

This is a long-term care skilled nursing facility sponsored by ArchCare, the health ministry of the Archdiocese of New York, and affiliated with New York Medical College. It provides care for patients with advanced HIV/AIDS, Huntington’s disease, as well as those with cancer and other diseases that typically affect the elderly.

WHEN: Students will be working Mondays through Fridays from June 5th to August 11th, 2017.

WHY: Ashley Shaw, a former intern, was sponsored by Harvard Medical School to qualitatively evaluate student and patient perceptions of this program's pallative and end-of-life care curriculum.

Ashley Shaw, "What do college students & nursing home residents take away from a summer immersed in palliative care?" »


CONTACT: Jill Shah

This internship program is supported, in part, by the Center for Science and Society at Columbia Univeristy.

Full Application »