Columbia students interested in the SURF and Amgen Scholars Program can begin applying on January 2nd of the year in which they wish to conduct research. By applying to the SURF program, you will also be considered for the Amgen Scholars Program.

The Department of Biological Sciences at Columbia University offers Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships to a select group of motivated undergraduate students who will benefit from the opportunity for hands-on biology-related laboratory research. This is a chance to experience the joys of discovering something completely new while learning to overcome the challenges inherent in scientific research. Most students work either on the Morningside Heights campus or in the biomedical labs at Columbia's Health Sciences Center.

The fellowship is competitive with awards based on grades, recommendations, and a personal meeting with the laboratory director. You may apply if you are currently a junior, sophomore, or first-year student in Columbia College, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, or the School of General Studies. No previous research experience is necessary, and you do not need to be a biology major to apply. Students are expected to work full-time for the duration of the program, so participation in SURF is not compatible with attending summer school, working at another job, or volunteering.

SURF program runs for 10 weeks, from May 28th through August 2nd, 2024. During the 10 weeks of the program, the students work full-time (about 40 hours/week) on independent study projects under the guidance of a research scientist. At the beginning of the program, the students also have an orientation program that includes laboratory safety and selected topics on biological research. In addition, once a week SURF students get together to hear a scientist present a research seminar or to describe their own research to the other SURF students. All students are required to present orally, write an original research article describing their research due in August and present a poster of their work at the annual SURF Symposium during the spring semester. Participants receive a stipend of $5000. SURF does not pay for housing.

Applications will be accepted from January 2nd until 5pm on February 1st, 2024. All recommendations must be emailed through the application website by February 1st, 2024, at 5pm. Be sure to speak to the people writing your recommendations far enough in advance so they will have ample time to submit your recommendation by February 1st.

For further information, contact Chanda Springer:
[email protected], 744 Mudd, 212-854-2262.

  • Amgen Foundation
  • Genentech Foundation
  • Columbia College
  • SEAS/Engineering
  • Richard Axel
  • Cancer Center
  • General Studies
  • Norman Annenberg
  • Biological Sciences
  • SURF Mentors and Laboratories