Research Internship Program

Creating pathways to dental, oral, and craniofacial research careers in Oregon

Our primary objective is to establish clear paths to careers in dental, oral, and craniofacial research. We aim to provide opportunities for high school, undergraduate, and non-traditional learners, with a particular emphasis on engaging rural and underrepresented communities in Oregon. Our goal is to equip interns with the necessary skills and knowledge to actively pursue research in dental and oral health.

Comprehensive internship program

Our internship program offers various paid research internship pathways, tailored to the individual's educational level. Each intern will receive valuable mentorship from experienced researchers. Additionally, interns will participate in career development activities designed to help them assess and plan their future in the field of science. The summer internship program spans a minimum of 8 weeks, during which interns will delve into their research projects. At the conclusion of the program, interns will have the opportunity to showcase their hard work by presenting their research findings. This event not only celebrates their achievements but also provides a platform for learning from other interns' presentations.

Group shot of 14 people standing in front of glass doors outside of Mac Hall Cafe.
School of Dentistry welcomes our 2023 summer interns.

The application window for the 2024 Summer Internship is now closed. We are reviewing applicants and will notify students we are able to place in labs by April. 

View of Willamette River and bridge across Portland

Living in Portland and Oregon

Find out what our state has to offer.

Housing accommodations in Portland

Out-of-town interns in need of housing are encouraged to explore intern housing through Portland State University (PSU). PSU offers summer accommodations in their student dorms, with an easy commute to OHSU. 

Selfie of Dr. Lampi with Student and poster in background.

Internship eligibility

  1. Currently enrolled as a student in high school or an undergraduate degree program or just graduated from an undergraduate program. 
  2. Have a desire to pursue a career in Dentistry or Oral Health
  3. Must be 16 or older

The application window for the 2024 Summer Internship is now closed.

The following labs have summer internship opportunities available:

Nickel-Iwasaki Lab

Our focus is on clinical and translational research that investigates the effects of biomechanics on the craniofacial system. Among our foci are measurements of jaw-loading mechanics and behaviors in order to understand conditions of growth, maintenance, degeneration, and pain associated with the human temporomandibular joint (TMJ).​

PI: Jeff Nickel and Laura Iwasaki

The focus of our oral microbiome laboratories is to determine the symbiotic and pathogenic interactions among the oral microbiome and how these interactions interface with biomaterials.

Wu lab

Our focus is investigating the underlying molecular mechanisms of biofilm formation for bacterial persistence and chronic infections.  We are particularly interested in understanding molecular cross-talks between microbes and aim to develop new anti-infective approaches that prevent and treat persistent infections.​

Visit the Wu Lab page.

Kreth Lab

The Kreth lab investigates fundamental processes of commensal bacterial interactions in the oral biofilm. We aim to identify and characterize the molecular mechanisms that promote commensal species to better understand the healthy oral microbiome.​

Visit the Kreth Lab page.

Merritt Lab

Our focus is on the molecular and cellular microbiology of the human oral microbiome to understand how mucosal health is regulated in the human body.

Visit the Merritt Lab page.

Baker Lab

The Baker lab is using Microbiology and Bioinformatics to discover how the bacteria that live in our mouth impact human health and disease.

Visit the Baker Lab page.

Our biomaterials laboratories are leading the way to develop bacterial-resistant dental materials.

Pfiefer Lab

​Polymeric materials provide a versatile platform for innovation in many different applications. Our laboratory focuses on developing novel monomers and oligomeric additives, with a strong emphasis on photopolymerization.

Visit the Pfiefer Lab page.

Fugolin Lab

The Fugolin lab focus is to design and validate biomimetic synthetic systems that induce minute, orchestrated changes, leading to significant physicochemical and biological responses to external and internal stimuli.​​

Visit the Fugolin Lab page.

Ferracane Lab

Our focus has been on conducting clinical research in private dental practices through practitioners working with their own staff and patients. While we have studied a variety of dental conditions, we recently conducted the largest prospective study of cracked teeth, including nearly 3000 patients in over 200 dental offices as a part of the NIH-funded National Dental Practice-based Research Network.

PI: Jack Ferracane

Our tissue engineering and regenerative medicine laboratories are using 3D printing to form the matrix for stem cells to attach and grow not only teeth, but tissues like heart and cartilage.

Bertassoni Lab

Our focus is 3D bioprinting for the fabrication of complex tissue environments with functional vascular networks for regenerative applications. We are also interested in the development of functional hydrogels for the study of the interaction of biomaterials with matrix molecules on the nanoscale.​

Visit the Bertassoni Lab page.

Hsu Lab

The Hsu lab's research in dentistry focus lies at the intersection of stem cell molecular biology and translational research. The current subjects of studies in Hsu lab include novel differentiation factors for bone repair, characterization of osteogenic perivascular stem cells, and stem cells in degenerative joint diseases.​​

Visit the Hsu Lab page.

The Division of Dental Public Health, led by Drs. Foster-Page and Kohli, focuses on research, policies, and providing oral health care in underserved populations, including at the Russell Street Clinic and clinics throughout Oregon. Their work focuses on innovative workforce models to improve dental access and care and highlight the importance of oral health to improve oral health outcomes at the local and policy level.​

PI: Lyndie Foster-Page, Richie Kohli, and Kirsten Lampi

Community Oral Health Research Internship in Coos Bay!

Discover the connection between oral health and overall well-being. Explore an exciting internship opportunity in Coos Bay through Oregon Health & Science University, dedicated to engaging students in research on oral and systemic health. (Discover the connection between oral health and overall well-being in the comprehensive report available at

Join the OHSU Campus for Rural Health (CRH) internship program, where you can contribute to community health projects and gain invaluable real-world experience. Starting from spring 2024 for 15 weeks, be a part of the Growing Together initiative, focusing on increasing children's vegetable intake. The project involves distributing small garden boxes and vegetable starts to local first-grade students, providing gardening instruction, and conducting surveys throughout the growing season. Interns will develop skills in interviews, survey analysis, and presentation of findings. Elevate your experience with this hands-on research internship, seamlessly blending scientific inquiry with impactful community engagement. Uncover a world of opportunities at the intersection of health research and community involvement.

Coos Bay, Oregon

Questions?  Contact Linda Martin Stanger at or Richie Kohli, BDS, MS at

This is an 8 to 15 week internship. Timeline is based on the start of a quarterly term. 

To apply:

The application window for the 2024 Summer Internship is now closed.

To apply, please submit the following documents (in a single pdf file) through the online application form.

  1. Resume/Curriculum vitae
  2. Personal statement: a brief description (1 page) of your most meaningful research experience and future career goals.
  3. Unofficial college transcript
  4. At least 1 letter of recommendation addressing your research and science experience. Letters can be submitted via the applicant portal or sent separately by the recommender directly

Please contact the School of Dentistry, Office of Research with any questions or need for assistance.