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Data and Computing Summer Lab

The Data and Computing Summer Lab is an immersive 10-week paid summer internship program at the University of Chicago. The goal of the internship is to pair students (high school through undergraduate) with a data science mentor in various domains, such as: computer science, data science, social science, climate and energy policy, materials science, biomedical research. Through this pairing the intern will engage with and hone their skills in research methodologies, practices, and teamwork. We encourage participation from a broad range of students, and require no prior research experience to apply.

Join our mailing list to receive information about the 2020 Data and Computing Summer Lab application process.

Benefits of participating in the Data and Computing Summer Lab include an innovative, continuous learning environment, opportunities for collaboration, mentorship, and invaluable, hands-on research experience at one of the top research universities. As an intern, you will be placed in a research group that matches your unique skills and learning goals. You will also participate in cohort orientation, tutorials on various data science tools, and other educational activities to help develop your intellectual skill set.

CDAC interns play a game in the Media Arts, Data, and Design Center, our neighbors in the John Crerar Library building. (Photo by Katie Rosengarten)

The collaborative environment will extend beyond your project, as you will be provided with a co-located, open research space in the Computer Science Department, housed in the John Crerar Library at the University of Chicago — the goal of which is to foster problem-solving and engagement across projects, domains, ages, and skill sets. Over the 10-week span of the program, you will be exposed to the full lifecycle of a research project, beginning with the ideation and development of a research plan, and expanding to communicating project progress through oral presentations; attending presentations and workshops by other University researchers to further inform your project; participating in reading groups; and potentially even working towards publication of results.

Engagement with the broader University community is enacted through weekly lunch meetings featuring talks from a wide range of professors, lecturers, researchers, postdocs, and PhD students representative of the range of projects and research being done by the intern cohort. These presentations provide a unique opportunity for students to hear first-hand from cutting-edge researchers not only about their current and ongoing work, but about their journey to academia or industry and their advice for students interested in entering into the wide, ever-changing world of data science.

CDAC interns learn about digital fabrication at the Museum of Science and Industry, one of the summer field trips. (Photo by Katie Rosengarten)

Supplementary to lab and project work is a series of extracurricular activities which has previously included trips to Argonne National Laboratory and the Museum of Science and Industry for interactive activities and presentations from researchers; social events such as an end-of-summer BBQ, ice cream social, and weekly afternoon tea; and more.

Lastly, and most importantly, the success and unique identity of the program benefits from the diverse and wide range of students who participate in it. We value an inclusive approach when selecting applicants that allows our program to enact and represent the kind of diversity within the field of data science and computer science that we believe it should aspire to.

Interns hear from CS and UChicago Arts faculty on a career panel, one of our weekly lunch events. (Photo by Rob Mitchum)