My daughter is a sophomore and a Biology major at a LAC. She is interested in an internship for next summer that would help give her some experience in the field of Biology – she is interested in research or maybe biotech, but not patient interfacing careers. This is an area that I really know nothing about. Of course she will use the career center in her college but just wondering if parents familiar with this field can make any recommendations about locating good companies for her to pursue. And leads in the Boston area (especially Metrowest as that is where we live but I know Cambridge is big in this area) would be so appreciated! Any tips, what to expect in this field, advice etc also appreciated!
Many colleges using Handshake.
You can get some ideas from Chegg.
What about Sanofi?
NSF summer research programs also may be of interest.
Her advisor & other profs are typically a better stop than the career center for internships.
Is she working with a prof on research now? If not, she should get her skates on and start finding out who has what opportunities in her department. She will need that experience & LoR.
If she is not currently doing any research, her best bet for this summer may be at her college: many (most?) LACs have funded research opps over the summer, which are a great place to start. They are typically mildly competitive, in that there is an application process, and not everyone gets one on the first go round, but the acceptance rate is typically much, much higher than for outside internships.
If she has been doing research, the REUs that @Hippobirdy linked to are a great option. She should be aware that applications open in December-ish, and getting apps out early is important. She should also be aware that the departments get overwhelmed and responses can be very slow (or not at all). Applying widely is important.
You are going to find the random approach to be a total time-waster. Your D is a college student- reaching out blindly to companies (of which there are hundreds) is going to sap energy which could be better used on other things.
Professors, grad students and career services-- those are her routes in. Career services will maintain a schedule of who is interested in students and for which type of roles; professors have colleagues and former students working at these companies and ditto for grad students. Having your D do a cold approach-- for dozens and dozens of companies- just isn’t productive.
She should be tweaking her resume now with help from career services, and seeing if there are research opportunities on campus right now that will give her skills and experience which will help her during interviews.
While I agree that using targeted resources is better, I can tell you that as we’ve queried parents of my son’s school for engineering, it appears more have found their jobs via linkedin and indeed than the school. It likely depends on the school.
We used a shotgun approach on my son’t summer internships - and he got multiple hits.
The issue as a sophomore may be - if they’re looking for future employees - you’re two years away so it might be harder to secure a role.
But if you go to indeed and I used the term biology research summer internship and boston - and you find some - and of course you can change the words - but maybe some of these will help.
Of course, taking the time to fill out apps is time consuming as pointed out - but today most companies are seeking key words from the database so while it’s maybe not efficient, it can be effective as a complement to other angles.
Looks like great resources, thank you!
Thanks for these suggestions! She is actually doing research with a biology professor this semester (although the prof’s expertise are more in ecology which is not really the area she wants to pursue, she just had a connection to this prof as she had him for an intro class last semester). She did do research with a chemistry prof her freshman year. Lots of opportunities at her college which is great!
Great, thank you for your suggestions! No grad students as she attends a college but I’ll have her check with her profs in addition to career services. And yes she is working on her resume too. Thank you!
Oh interesting there are postings out this early already! Thanks for sharing your son’s experience. Will definitely let my daughter know! I wondered about that too if as a rising junior if the companies are as interested. I’d love to see her over the summer months working at something related to her career rather than just some random summer job.
I think rising juniors are where they start to get jobs. My son did. The summer after first year he detailed cars. So not a professional gig but at least he worked and he showed passion to be in the industry he wants to work in.
It’s great she had research experience.
In my opinion it’s most important they work. It may be at McDonalds - not preferable but much better than doing nothing.
It may be like her research - in the realm but not directly related. This is fine. That she’s been hired in something real world is important. She may love or not Iove but it’s building a resume. And that’s key. Having a great name people know or a great experience. Both are good.
I can’t speak for bio but yes many large companies are already hiring for next summer. In some fields or companies apps have already closed.
I’d set up a few searches on indeed. Maybe expand beyond Boston just in case. We had an open location search bcuz it’s 12 weeks. That’s it. My son had an offer in MS. He took it. ThT offer then led to the next summer near home. You can’t be picky in some cases. Build the resume.
Again this is to complement other resources others have mentioned - profs, career centers, guest speakers - what not. It can take a lot of time.
But if the resume and cover letter are enticing, they will get calls or opportunities do hirevue interviews or otherwise. There are just some jobs that won’t go through handshake.
Ps - she might look to see if her school works with co op students. While you may get off track time wise academically that can be a great way to find employment. Her academic department or career center should be able to help.
tbh I would remove the Boston limit: there are so many Bio students looking for summer internships generally- and Boston is overrun with universities, so the competition for placements will be intense.
Sure, start there- no reason not to start with your first choice!- but I strongly recommend broadening the search parameters.
My daughter’s school already had their career fair for both summer internships and full time work. It’s definitely not too early to be looking!
Your D should start asking at school if there are any industry partners from bio tech or pharma, in addition to seeing about research at NIH type places.
I also agree with widening the search area. Companies may pay for summer housing or have arrangements with nearby colleges for summer students to live in dorms.
She could also see about paid summer research at her school with a different prof doing work that better aligns with her interests.
Indeed- that is typical for REUs