Biomedical Engineering Summer Internships

A group of eight people stand in two rows and smile at the camera. There are trees and glass windows in the background.
OHSU faculty members Owen McCarty, Ph.D. (left) and Joseph Aslan, Ph.D. (second from right) took postdoctoral fellow Jenny Si-Han Wang (third from left) and five ORION interns (left to right: Nathaniel Dobson, Vrishank Shivaprakash, Theodora Alese, Owen Baenen and Gavin Hutchison) to the American Heart Association’s Basic Cardiovascular Sciences meeting in Boston in 2023.

If you’re a high school or college student, you can explore a career in biomedical engineering through a summer internship. You will contribute to world-class research that helps health care providers understand and treat disease.

Equity Internship Program

Dates: June 24 – Aug. 16, 2024
Apply by: Jan. 22, 2024
Who’s eligible: Undergraduate students who excel academically and come from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds
Spots: 25-30 positions across OHSU

The Equity Internship Program offers hands-on research experience to underrepresented students. Lab placement options include the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the Knight Cancer Institute's Cancer Early Detection Advanced Research Center, among other tracks at the university.

You’ll study alongside OHSU scientists, attend seminars and present your research at an OHSU poster symposium. Previous summer interns have studied cell behavior in 3D engineered tissues and worked on an assay to measure protease activity in early-stage ovarian cancer, among other projects.

How to apply: See the Equity Research Program for more information and an application link or contact

Fluorescence Molecular Imaging Internship Program

Dates: Flexible start and end dates; 10-week minimum
Apply by: March 15, 2024
Who’s eligible: High school and undergraduate students
Spots: 6-8

You’ll get hands-on science education and build valuable skills in the Gibbs Lab, studying ways to expand biomedical imaging through contrast agents.

You’ll learn a variety of laboratory skills:

  • Cell culture
  • Spectroscopy 
  • Fluorescence microscopy
  • Macroscopic fluorescence imaging
  • Immunostaining
  • Organic synthesis
  • Small molecule purification 
  • Antibody conjugation

You’ll also learn about data analysis and processing, as well as programming, especially in the area of image analysis.

Your first summer is unpaid, but you may be eligible to return the following year for a paid internship.

How to apply: Email Summer Gibbs, Ph.D. at with your CV and a cover letter explaining your interest in the program.

HEART Internship

Dates: June 24, 2024 – July 12, 2024
Apply by: March 15, 2024
Who’s eligible: High school students (age 16 or older)
Spots: 4

Immerse yourself in the world of research and explore your interest in cardiovascular engineering as part of the HEART (High School Students Engaged in Applied Sciences, Research and Technology) internship program.

You’ll learn engineering methods for studying fetal heart development, focusing on better prevention, diagnosis and treatment of heart defects in babies and children. You’ll get hands-on experience in the lab and formal training through lectures and discussion. 

This outreach program is a collaboration between Sandra Rugonyi's lab at OHSU and Arash Kheradvar's lab at the University of California, Irvine. Interns receive a stipend and are supported by grants from the National Science Foundation and OHSU’s Quantitative and Systems Biology program

How to apply: Form available on the Kheradvar Lab site.

ORION Undergraduate Internship Program

Dates: 10 weeks, flexible start date
Apply by: Feb. 15, 2024
Who’s eligible: Undergraduates (rising juniors and seniors), recent graduates
Spots: 4

As a student in the Oregon Research and InnovatiON (ORION) Undergraduate Internship Program, you’ll study basic research and real-world treatments for cardiovascular disease. You’ll work to find new pathways that lead to safe and effective treatments for cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke. 

You’ll learn four key concepts: 

  • Experimental premise and design in cardiovascular research 
  • Data and quantitative analysis 
  • Oral and written presentation of results 
  • Diversity, equity and inclusion in teams

You will conduct research in one of four areas:

Positions are available in the cardiovascular engineering  laboratories led by Monica Hinds, Owen McCarty, Sandra Rugonyi, Joe Aslan, Joseph Shatzel and Karina Nakayama. 

This initiative is funded by the American Heart Association. Students receive a stipend of $6,000 to cover room and board, as well as support to attend and present at a national conference. 

How to apply: Send the following materials to

  • CV or resume 
  • Unofficial transcript
  • Cover letter describing career goals and research interest
  • One letter of recommendation (sent separately)

Quantitative Biology / Biophysics Internship

Dates: 8 weeks, starting in June
Apply by: March 15, 2024
Who’s eligible: High school and undergraduate students
Spots: 2-3

Participate in experiments and data analysis as part of the Galbraith Lab’s research in quantitative biology and biophysics. You’ll be in a cutting-edge research setting with meaningful problems to solve as you learn the skills to become a quantitative scientist.

We structure each project to be appropriate for your educational level, and you will be encouraged to take scientific ownership of your work. At the end of the internship, you will either present your project at a local conference or be included as an author in a national abstract presentation.

Skills and concepts learned by past interns include:

  • Image analysis
  • Time lapse and super-resolution microscopy
  • Nanofabrication
  • Immunohistochemistry and characterization of novel fluorophores
  • Basic molecular biology

The Galbraith Lab operates within the Knight Cancer Institute and the Department of Biomedical Engineering. Interns receive a stipend.

How to apply: Send email to James Galbraith  or Catherine Galbraith  with your CV and a cover letter explaining your interest in the program. Visit the Galbraith Lab for more information.

OHSU Summer Programs

Learn more about other programs available at OHSU for high school and college students.