Summer Veterinary Scholars Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Is one of your favorite parts of veterinary medicine pondering the mysteries that remain in medicine? Do you enjoy the thrill of being the first to know something? Are the “non-traditional” animal species your favorites? Would you like a career of boundless possibilities?

If so, you may want to consider a career in research as a veterinarian! Take the opportunity to complete your very own mentored research project and learn more about what veterinarians do in research at The Division of Comparative Medicine at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology this summer! MIT DCM is recruiting veterinary students for our Summer Veterinary Scholars Program. MIT is home to a community of more than 10 staff veterinarians engaged in biomedical research, laboratory animal medicine and/or comparative pathology and 10 veterinarian postdoctoral trainees preparing for similar careers in research. Research Scholars will participate in mentored research projects in the laboratories of established investigators at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and will expand their understanding of career opportunities for veterinarians in research through career chats and field trips throughout the Boston metro area. Additional networking opportunities are provided through shared programming with the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine.

We plan to host our program on site in 2022. Official summer programming will occur May 30 – August 5 in 2022, and cumulate in presentation of your research at the National Veterinary Scholars Symposium. To maximally benefit from the program, Scholars are encouraged to schedule vacations before or after the program to make sure that they will be present for all 10 weeks. However, we can be flexible on program dates for those whose school schedules are not compatible with this time frame.

Research Fellows will receive a stipend consistent with NIH NRSA stipends, currently set at $2,153 per month. While no research experience is required, applicants must have completed one year of veterinary school. Accepted candidates will need to bring evidence of COVID-19 vaccination (including booster), a negative TB test that is less than six months old prior to their arrival at MIT as well as proof of a positive measles titer.

Interested candidates should send a cover letter including details on prior research experience (if any), CV, unofficial veterinary school transcripts and two letters of recommendation to  dvmtraining@mit.edu. Questions about the program should be directed to Dr. Martina Jackson, VMD, DACLAM. Veterinary Scholars will be matched with a research mentor based on their research interests and available projects after acceptance; mentors may be DCM senior staff or other MIT faculty.

Applications are due by January 31, 2022. Interested candidates should send a cover letter including details on prior research experience (if any), CV, unofficial veterinary school transcripts and two letters of recommendation to  dvmtraining@mit.edu. Questions about the program should be directed to Dr. Martina Jackson, VMD, DACLAM. Veterinary Scholars will be matched with a research mentor based on their research interests and available projects after acceptance; mentors may be DCM senior staff or other MIT faculty.

Examples of past research projects include:

  1. Role of CD40/CD40L interactions in the formation of platelet-endothelial associations in EcoHIV-infected mouse model of HIV infection.
  2. Evaluation of quality of aseptic technique, analgesia and anesthesia protocols in rodent surgery featured in peer-reviewed video-based publications.
  3. Maternal microbiota modulates a Fragile X-like Syndrome in offspring mice.
  4. Common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) behaviors and vocalizations as a measure of stress during capture and handling.
  5. Characterization of non-Helicobacter pylori Helicobacter in macaques.
  6. Prevalence of mouse kidney parvovirus in laboratory and wild mice.
  7. Characterization of changes in semen quality with age in C57Bl/6 Ntac breeding males.
  8. Effect of manuka honey microneedles on wound healing in a cell culture model.
  9. Effect of cholera toxin consumption on age-associated obesity.
  10. Role of IL1b in colonization dynamics of Fusobacterium nucleatum in mice.

This program is partially sponsored through the generosity of the Boehringer Ingelheim Veterinary Scholars Program.