Summer Undergraduate Research Program

Due to the pandemic, SURP dates for 2021 are still under consideration.  Please check back for updates.

The MUSC Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is a 10-week research and educational based program run by the College of Graduate Studies on the campus of the Medical University of South Carolina. The purpose of the SURP is to promote access to graduate education and to enhance specific skills that are required for success in a subsequent D.M.D., M.D., Ph.D. or dual degree (D.M.D./Ph.D., M.D./Ph.D.) in Biomedical Sciences. MUSC offers this valuable opportunity to academically talented and motivated students who confirm a strong interest in graduate and/or doctoral studies.

Trainees accepted to the MUSC SURP are matched with a graduate faculty mentor and placement in labs is as close to the trainees’ research interests as possible. However, our primary goal is to provide you with a research experience in an area of the biomedical sciences that will not only give you a broad view into the world of a researcher, but also enhance your scientific perspective and provide you with important “hands on” experience you may not receive in your undergraduate curriculum. In addition to working with a faculty mentor, our trainees are supported by a research team. This team may consist of graduate students, post docs, medical students, research scientists, and other undergraduate or high school students.

Professional Development

After several weeks of getting acclimated to the laboratory’s routine and equipment, SURP trainees are guided toward development of an independent research project. As an MUSC SURP trainee you will be enrolled in the course CGS 761 “Laboratory Observation and Apprenticeship” and will receive 15 credit hours on an MUSC transcript after successfully completing the SURP program. Students returning for a second summer receive 10 credit hours. Additionally, the SURP Trainee will participate in a variety of professional development activities such as:

  • Responsible Conduct of Research: an one-week course in Research Ethics;
  • Attend a select group of Core and Specialized lectures;
  • Attend Journey Club Meetings and Seminars that may be assigned by their labs;
  • The Big Brother/Sister Program: Each SURP is paired with a graduate student who will provide first hand information about MUSC’s Graduate Programs;
  • Scientific Writing: Trainees prepare a report about their projects written in the form of a scientific journal article;
  • SURP Colloquia: a one-day symposium where student trainees present their final projects to their peers, mentors, and research team.

Social Development

SURP participants are encouraged to build both social and academic networks with one another and with members of the university community. Participants are encouraged to organize and coordinate activities with their peers during off-hours, and the College of Graduate Studies’ office of Summer Programs will offer planned activities and events for all SURP participants. One of the social events is a cruise around the Charleston Harbor.

Financial Support & Housing

Applicants should be eager to immerse in research and self-sufficient enough to arrange their own travel. SURP participants will receive a living allowance of $400.00 per week for a total of $4000 to help pay for expenses while participating in the SURP. Please note: this living allowance is not tax-free and taxes will be deducted if required. MUSC SURP does not offer meal tickets for the 10-week program. Meals are the responsibility of the student.

For students living outside of the greater Charleston area, convenient housing will be offered. Details of this housing will be provided later. This housing will be offered on a first come first serve basis to SURP students. Estimated housing costs may be $2500 or more for the 10 weeks. Some students may qualify to receive a housing allowance of at least $1000.