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SickKids Summer Research Program

The SickKids Summer Research Program


The SickKids Summer Research (SSuRe) Program provides opportunities for university students to conduct research in a laboratory or clinical setting at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) under the supervision of a Research Institute scientist.

The program runs for 15 weeks from early May to mid-August. Specific start dates are arranged directly with the hiring scientists. The program includes weekly seminars presented by the Hospital and Research Institute staff members. The final event of the program is the Annual Summer Student Symposium. At the Symposium, most students present the results of their summer projects in poster format while seven outstanding students present orally. Awards are presented to select students with exceptional research projects.

Eligibility Criteria

Eligible students include:

  • Students enrolled in an undergraduate degree program at time of application
  • Students enrolled in medical school at the time of application
  • Students who are Canadian residents or landed immigrants
  • Scientists and students must be conducting their research at SickKids

Students who are NOT eligible include:

  • High school students
  • Students enrolled in a Master's or Doctoral program

No minimum grade point average (GPA) is required to be eligible to apply to the program. However, please note that these positions are highly competitive, therefore a strong GPA is advantageous.

Remuneration and Work Hours

Students will be paid for the 15-week program (based on an hourly rate of $11.40 + 4% vacation for a 35-hour work week). 

The program typically runs Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, this may vary slightly within each scientist's lab.

Application Procedure

The list of scientists recruiting summer students, descriptions of the available positions and applications for the summer program are posted in mid December annually. Each scientist will indicate the method by which they wish to receive applications (i.e. mail, fax, email). The method(s) indicated are the only way to apply to each scientist.

You must apply directly to each scientist. Neither the Research Training Centre nor the Human Resources Department will accept applications.

If you would like to apply to more than one scientist, you must send individual applications to each one as each scientist is responsible for selecting their own student.

To apply students must submit the following:

  • SickKids Summer Research Program Student Application form
  • Resume
  • Current university transcripts
    • Official or unofficial transcripts (copies or online versions) are acceptable. Please submit electronically with the rest of your application.
  • One (1) reference letter from an individual familiar with your skills and best able to describe your past and/or current work/school experience. (e.g. professor, high school teacher, previous employer). 
    • Reference letter should be submitted electronically by the referee to the hiring scientist(s). The reference letter is not to be included in your PDF package to the hiring scientist.
    • The reference letter is to be emailed to the hiring scientist by the Referee, with the subject line: SSuRe Program Reference Letter -<Candidate’s <Last Name><First Name>
    • There are no specific criteria the referee should address in the reference letter, but in general, such letters should describe a student's education background, academic performance, relevant research training or work experience, characteristics and abilities. The letter should also highlight the student's achievements to date.

Please email your application as one PDF file (hard copy of application form completed + resume + transcripts scanned into one PDF file (not larger than 7MB)  minus the reference letter/s) to the hiring scientist(s).

Due to the large volume of applications received, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

Each scientist will conduct interviews and make final selections independently. All candidates selected for the program will have been contacted by early April of each year.

Application Deadline

Deadline to send in your application is January 31, 2017.

For More Information 

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions section.

Contact us at summer.program@sickkids.ca