High School Internship and Ambassador Positions

Application Deadline is 4pm Pacific Time on March 18, 2021.

The Institute for Systems Biology (ISB) is an internationally renowned non-profit research institute dedicated to the study and application of systems biology. Founded in 2000 in Seattle, Washington, ISB´s goal is to unravel biological complexity by deciphering vast amounts of data in order to gain valuable insights and achieve breakthroughs across scientific disciplines.

This summer, we are offering 2 different types of opportunities for high school students.
The application for each of these opportunities is the same. When completing the online application you will be prompted to indicate which of these experiences you are most interested in. The deadline for application is 4:00pm Pacific Time on Thursday, March 18, 2021. No late applications will be accepted.

  1. Current juniors (11th graders) only are eligible for ISB’s paid 8-week (~320 hour) formal summer internship. Possible internship topics include but are not limited to: computational biology, the microbiome, cancer, systems medicine (medicine that is predictive, preventative, personalized and participatory) and bioengineering with algae. All projects are aligned with a current ISB project which is driven by a mentor. Students will learn about systems biology and apply their learning to a research project. Depending on the project, students will also learn and/or deepen understanding in scientific, engineering, math, coding, and other professional and computer-based skills. All projects also include: a) interviewing ISB professionals to learn about various career paths, b) building a website that describes the internship project and experience, and c) helping out with school-based curriculum development if pertinent. We are seeking 2-10 temporary High School Interns to work in the Baliga Laboratory and/or other ISB Labs. See this page, along with its embedded linked pages, for more information: https://see.isbscience.org/high-school-intern-program/. This position will tentatively begin Monday, June 28 and end on August 20, 2021. The Interns will work up to 40 hours per week. Pay rate is $16.69/hour.
    • Timeline for applying and hiring of interns:
      • Mid-January: Application process opens.
      • March 18: Application window closes at 4:00 pm Pacific Time. Late applications will not be accepted.
      • March 19-April 30: Application Review. You will be contacted via email by the end of April regarding your application.
      • May: Phone interviews, video interviews and informal offers
      • June: Formal offer letters sent to selected applicants
  2. Current 10th and 11th graders can apply to be part of our brand new, Systems Thinkers in STEM Ambassador Program. All applicants who complete the full application will be accepted into the first tier of this program and can choose whether or not they participate. The program will consist of two tiers.
    • As a Tier 1 participant, you would be invited to attend a 2-hour micro-course: “Systems are Everywhere.” You will learn about systems modeling and how systems thinking is used in research and careers.  These courses will be held many times throughout the winter and spring of this year. You will be able to sign up to participate when you complete your application.
    • After Tier 1, if you are interested, you will be eligible to participate in Tier 2. Tier 2 participants will select one, 20-hour interactive course on interdisciplinary systems research content and careers. Options include systems medicine, cancer biology, climate change, computational modeling, bioengineering, oceanography, aquaponics, technology development, and more! The Tier 2 courses will begin after March 18th and will extend into the Fall of 2021.  The program will culminate in independent Ambassador projects that will be showcased in October. Tier 2 participants will receive a stipend for participation. The amount is still being determined based on our upcoming fundraising efforts and the number of participants.  However, we are estimating participants will each receive a stipend for $150 or more. Learn more about this new program on and from this page: https://see.isbscience.org/high-school-intern-program/.
    • Timeline for the Systems Thinkers in STEM Ambassador Program
      • Mid-January: Application process opens.
      • March 18: Application window closes at 4:00 pm Pacific Time. Late applications will not be accepted.
      • March 19-April 30: Application Review. You will be contacted via email by the end of April regarding your application.

All positions and programs will be virtual/remote rather than in-person. If COVID-19 transmission numbers and state regulations allow in-person gatherings, we will consider one or more in-person events. However, you should plan on a fully remote experience.  If needed, a computer with connection to data can be loaned to you in order to participate in these experiences.

To apply, please:

  • complete the Google Form application (a sample of the Google Form application is available here to help to prepare your responses). As part of this application, you will answer questions and upload a cover letter, resume and unofficial transcript.
  • complete the ISB Careers page High School Internship Application.
  • have your recommender directly send their letter to Systems Education Experiences (SEE) at see@isbscience.org or 401 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109.  Please verify with your recommender that they have sent their letter and include their name and email address in the Google form when prompted.

Tips to help you prepare and complete your application:

  • First complete your prep work and get your documents together:
    • Complete your resume and obtain your unofficial transcript. You will upload each of these files into the google form when prompted.
    • Request a letter of recommendation from a teacher, coach, supervisor, or other mentor and ask them to have your recommender directly send their letter to Systems Education Experiences (SEE) at see@isbscience.org or 401 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109.
    • Spend time preparing your cover letter. In your cover letter, please address the prompts below. You can use any order you’d like to answer the prompts. We will use this information as our first way of getting to know you and hopefully to match you with mentors and peers either during this application cycle and/or a future cycle. All information shared will be kept confidential. Question prompts to address in your cover letter:
      • Please describe 1) your career goals, 2) why you are interested in scientific research, 3) what interests you most about ISB’s scientific projects AND our SEE curriculum-related projects, and 4) why you are hoping to work at or with ISB specifically.
      • Please describe what specifically is most interesting for you within this summer’s opportunities and/or topics. Please also list any specific educational benefit you are hoping to receive and/or requirements of your educational organization (for example: complete a paper, work 60 hours on a specific project, complete an assignment).
      • This is an optional question/prompt – you are not required to answer any or all of this prompt.  Answering or not answering this question will NOT hinder you from moving forward in the application process.  We simply want to understand your narrative and learn more about you.  We value this information if you choose to share it and will keep it confidential. We seek to provide opportunities for students who do not generally have a chance to do real science.  We also want to ensure that you have every opportunity to succeed.  Therefore this information will help us design internship teams and activities that enable success for all.  Feel free to describe your background so we can learn more about you as a person.  For instance, do you identify as a member of a disadvantaged, marginalized, historically excluded, or traditional underrepresented group?  Do you have a diagnosed disability or are there some accommodations that we could provide that would help you do best in this program? What is the highest level of education attained by a parent or guardian? What is the highest level of education you hope to attain? If you would like to share information pertinent to your application that was not covered in another question, please do so within your cover letter.
  • You can log in multiple times prior to the deadline to update your application and submit associated files (your resume and transcript and any other materials you would like to share).  Only your final, complete application will be reviewed.
  • Online applications are strongly encouraged. However, if you are unable to complete the online application process, please email our team at see@isbscience.org for a paper application. You will then be able to submit all hard copy documents to:  Human Resources, High School Internship Application, Institute for Systems Biology,  401 Terry Avenue N,  Seattle, WA 98109.

Any questions can be directed to Systems Education Experiences (see@isbscience.org, or to Rachel Calder at 206-732-1369).