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CURE - Summer Research Program 2017

June 19 - August 11, 2017

Application Deadline:
March 1, 2017

Apply Online

CURE Summer Research Program


CURE (Continuing Umbrella of Research Experience Program) is a summer research program at the Lurie Cancer Center of Northwestern University for underserved college students interested in pursuing careers in the biomedical sciences. It is funded by a grant from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Each year the Lurie Cancer Center accepts 12 college students to work alongside top cancer researchers in state-of-the-art laboratories. The scientists act as mentors and work with students on nationally funded laboratory research projects during the eight-week summer program. Students are introduced to the basics of cancer biology and receive career guidance through weekly focused seminars presented by faculty members. At the end of the CURE program, each trainee is required to prepare a brief written summary and to give an oral report of his or her project to fellow CURE students and faculty mentors.


Students accepted into CURE work full-time for eight weeks on a research project in a biomedical discipline under the guidance of a Cancer Center faculty mentor. The majority of the time is spent participating in laboratory research, allowing participants to experience directly what it means to be a biomedical researcher. Emphasis is placed on the fundamental principles of scientific investigation.

Students gain an understanding of the basics of cancer biology through seminars presented by faculty members on topics such as cancer genes, cell cycle proteins, carcinogenesis, hematologic malignancies, etc. At the end of the CURE program, each trainee is required to prepare a brief written summary and to give an oral presentation of his or her project to fellow CURE students and research mentors.


To qualify students must be classified by the following fall semester as college freshmen, sophomore, junior or senior students. Applicants should be pursuing a major in the sciences, and their transcripts should demonstrate a record of academic achievement (GPA 3.2 or higher). Students must be US citizens or permanent residents of the US (with green card) and members of underserved populations (African American, Hispanic, Pacific Islander or Native American).


Participants in the CURE program receive a taxable stipend of approximately $3,500. In addition to the stipend, travel and housing are provided to students who do not live in the Chicago area.

Housing & Transportation

Housing is provided on the Evanston Campus of Northwestern University for students who do not live in the Chicago area. The Program will also pay for air travel to Chicago.

How to Apply

CURE 2016 online application.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How are mentors assigned?
A: Mentors are assigned based on the applicant's personal statement as part of the CURE Application.

Q: Can I select a specific lab?
A: Yes, you can request a specific lab and we will try to accommodate your request.

Q: Is the stipend subject to income tax?
A: Yes, the stipend is taxable.

Q: Will I be on the Chicago or Evanston Campuses of Northwestern?
A: You can be on either Campus.

Q: Is there transportation between Chicago and Evanston Campuses?
A: Yes, there is a free shuttle bus between the two campuses.

Q: How many hours per day is CURE?
A: CURE students work full time in the laboratory (35-40 hours per week).

Q: Are there opportunities for networking?
A: CURE students attend weekly seminars that are led by nationally recognized scientists. They are also encouraged to network within their own departments.


Contact Information

For additional information, contact:

Robin Leikin, PhD
Director, CURE Program
Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University