Internship programs gear up for summer
Kuo (COSMIC) with SOARS protégé Michael
Although summer may seem a long way off, the organization’s
internship programs are already preparing for fresh young
faces to arrive on campus—and recruiting mentors among
somewhat older faces. UCAR/NCAR is offering four internship
programs this summer, covering the broad range of atmospheric
and related sciences.
• SOARS (Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric Research
and Science) enters its 13th summer this year. An undergraduate-to-graduate
bridge program for students in atmospheric and related sciences,
SOARS provides up to four years of paid summer research experience,
mentoring, community support, and funding for conferences.
Its mission is to increase diversity in the field by involving
more students from underrepresented groups.
The program’s mentoring component includes research,
writing, and community mentors. Research mentors collaborate
with protégés on current research projects.
Writing mentors coach protégés with the written
and oral communication component of their projects. Community
mentors help protégés navigate the organization’s
culture as well as life in Boulder. No prior experience is
necessary for mentors. More information on SOARS.
• CISL’s SIParCS (Summer Internship
in Parallel Computational Science) offers research opportunities
and hands-on experience in high-performance computing to
graduate students and undergraduates who have completed their
junior years. The program is aimed at students interested
in pursuing careers in computational science, applied mathematics,
computer science, and computational geosciences. More
information on SIParCS,
including opportunities for mentors.
• EOL’s Summer Undergraduate
Engineering Internships give
students the chance to work on new and existing instrumentation
and operate instruments in the field during research projects.
Interns are encouraged to develop their own engineering solutions
as they work with mentors. They have access to resources
that include sophisticated testing and calibration instruments,
technical documentation, and advanced fabrication capabilities.
More information on Summer
Undergraduate Engineering Internships.
• ESSL/HAO’s Summer Undergraduate
Internship gives students research
opportunities in solar physics, solar-terrestrial physics,
and related astrophysics. HAO will partner this summer
with CU’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space
Physics (LASP) for an expanded program that includes the
participation of a number of space physics institutes in
the Boulder area. More information on the Summer
reciprocal benefits of mentoring
review by the Chronicle of Higher Education in August
2007 analyzed several studies on the experiences
of undergraduates doing science research. It found
that while undergraduates learn and grow significantly
from their research experiences, they require strong
mentor relationships to do so.
Staff who have served as mentors in UCAR and NCAR’s
various internship programs report that they themselves
learn and grow from working with students.
“It gives me a feeling of satisfaction to
be able to introduce a student to aspects of science
that he or she hasn’t experienced before,” says
Steve Massie (ESSL/ACD), who mentors with SOARS.
Mentoring has even boosted Steve’s own research,
leading to published results on a few occasions. “It
gives me the freedom to try a problem that I normally
wouldn’t have time to do, or to try something
I haven’t done before,” he says.
Bob Henson (Communications) says that in addition
to appreciating the enthusiasm and vitality that
protégés add to his summers, he finds
that mentoring strengthens his own skills for communicating
“It helps me think about NCAR’s research
as it might look from several steps away, so I can
better explain what I do and what NCAR does,” he
In this issue...
closer look at today’s forecast
programs gear up for summer
heart of winter
media office readies staff for interviews
Just One Look
Staff Notes home page | News Center