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Summer Student & Faculty Employment in Computing Sciences

CS Summer Students 6334

Every summer, the Computing Sciences Area hosts dozens of undergraduate and graduate students, as well as faculty-student teams, to work with our scientists and engineers to address challenges in scientific computing and networking. 

Berkeley Lab, located in Berkeley, California, is a world leader in computing, biological, physical, materials, chemical, and energy sciences research.

About the Program

The Computing Sciences Summer Student Program is a 12-week paid summer program that offers students the opportunity to gain hands-on research experience at Berkeley Lab.

The program is geared towards undergraduate students between their junior and senior years who have completed core courses in computer science, mathematics, and related areas of study or graduate students in any computer or computational science discipline. 

Summer researchers work on projects in computational research, high-performance computing, and/or high-speed networking under the guidance of one or more staff members. In summers past, students at Berkeley Lab have worked in such project areas as the following:

  • Analysis and solution of network and system-related software problems
  • Web-based clients for remote visualization
  • Numerical algorithms for nanoscience
  • Parallel scientific code templates
  • System for generating authorization policy for an information-sharing system
  • Scientific computing tools

Projects are designed so that students will complete a major portion of the work during the 10-12-week period. The exact starting date is at the mutual convenience of the students and the needs of the program. There are several different ways to apply and students are encouraged to apply via all eligible paths.

How to Apply

There are a number of different ways to apply for a summer research position with Computing Sciences, including directly to Berkeley Lab, via the Department of Energy's SULI or CCI programs, and through the Sustainable Horizon's faculty-student program called Sustainable Research Pathways.

Berkeley Lab Direct Hire 

Applications open in the fall prior to each summer term and are available on the main Berkeley Lab employment website, https://jobs.lbl.gov. Due to the high level of interest in our program, only online applications are accepted. Some of the information that will be required includes the following:

  • Skills and relevant experience
  • Interest in the program
  • Educational background
  • References

Students may also apply concurrently through the SULI or CCI programs.

Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship Program

The SULI, or Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship program, is a Department of Energy program to encourage undergraduates from two- and four-year colleges to pursue STEM careers by providing research internships at one of 16 DOE national laboratories. SULI provides internships in the summer, fall and spring. Placements are made in all areas of Berkeley Lab, including Computing Sciences.

Community College Internship Program

CCI, or Community College Internship program, seeks to encourage community college students to enter technical careers relevant to the DOE mission by providing 10-week internships at one of 15 DOE laboratories. Applicants must be currently enrolled as a full-time student at a community college or accredited two-year college and have completed at least one semester at the time of application. Applicants also must have completed at least six credit hours in science, mathematics, engineering or technology course areas, and completed at least 12 credits hours towards a degree. 

Faculty-Student Teams

Sustainable Research Pathways (SRP) is a Computing Sciences program designed to bring professor-and-student teams to the lab to work on research projects. The program, developed in conjunction with Sustainable Horizons Institute, brings faculty members and students to national labs to build research collaborations and expand opportunities for emerging scientists. In early December, Computing Sciences sponsors a workshop to begin recruiting participants for the following summer.

The December workshop is designed for faculty from a variety of institutions, including Minority Serving Institutions (MSI) and women’s and community colleges serving students from under-represented or underprivileged backgrounds. At the workshop, faculty will explore synergies between their own research and those of Berkeley Laboratory Staff. Matched participants, along with their proposed student research teams conduct collaborative summer research at the Berkeley Laboratory.

“Our goal is to make connections with faculty we might not otherwise connect with and to contribute to our diversity,” says Computational Research Division Director David Brown, who worked with Dr. Mary Ann Leung of the Sustainable Horizons Institute to develop the program, now in its fourth year.