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SickKids

SickKids Summer Research (SSuRe) Program

The SickKids Summer Research (SSuRe) Program provides professional and career development opportunities for undergraduate students who are working on a research project with a Research Institute (RI) scientist for the summer.

Program highlights

  • All undergraduate and medical students doing research with a RI scientist over the summer months are invited to participate in program activities  
  • 15-weeks from May to mid-August 
  • Weekly seminars presented by Hospital and RI scientists 
  • Career Night where students have a chance to meet research staff from across the RI 
  • Opportunity to present research projects at annual Summer Student Symposium 
  • Awards presented to select students for exceptional research projects

Eligibility, How to Apply, and Hiring Information

Expand the sections below to learn more about eligibility and how to apply for a SickKids summer student position, as well as potential hiring opportunities!

Download the 2023 SSuRe application form now. 

Any student who will be enrolled in a university/college undergraduate program in the fall following the Summer Program or enrolled in medical school is eligible to be hired as a Research Summer Student. That includes high school students in their last year. If you are in your final year of undergraduate studies, you are eligible to be hired as a Research Summer Student so long as you will be, or have applied to be, enrolled in a university/college program in the fall. 

If you’re a high school student but not in your last year, you may be eligible to participate in the Student Advancement Research (StAR) internship program

Students interested in applying to posted positions are encouraged to apply as early as possible, as scientists receive a high volume of applications and positions are filled quickly. Positions are posted in late fall/early winter. You must apply directly to each posting via the method of application indicated. Neither the Research Training Centre nor the Human Resources Department will accept or forward Research Summer Student applications.  

If you would like to apply to more than one scientist, you must send individual applications to each scientist, as each scientist is responsible for selecting their own student(s). You can view our full list of scientists on our Reseachers page.


To apply for a summer position, students must submit the following directly to the hiring scientist(s) via their preferred application method (as noted in the posting):  

1. Download, complete, and submit the SickKids Summer Research Program student application form (PDF)

2. Cover letter

3. CV/Resume

4. Current university/college transcripts  

  • Official or unofficial transcripts (copies or online versions) are acceptable. Please submit electronically with the rest of your application.
  • No minimum grade point average (GPA) is required to be eligible to apply for a SickKids Research Summer Student position. However, these positions are highly competitive, so it’s to your advantage to have a strong GPA. That said, passion and genuine interest go a long way!   

5. Any other documents required by the individual posting.


Due to the large volume of applications received, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. Each scientist will conduct interviews and make final selections independent of the Research Training Centre. All candidates selected for posted positions will have been contacted by early April of each year. 

After the deadline, students are advised to contact scientist(s) directly to see if positions are still available as only candidates chosen for interviews will be contacted.

Some scientists choose not to post research summer student positions, but rather hire students by direct application. 

To contact a scientist to see if they have any open research student opportunities, please visit our list of SickKids researchers to see who is doing research you’re interested in and contact them directly.

The U of T Student Life blog has a handy post with advice on applying for summer research positions.


Students must email the following directly to the scientist(s):

1.  Download, complete, and submit the SickKids Summer Research Program student application form (PDF)

2.Cover letter

3. CV/Resume

4. Current university/college transcripts

  • Official or unofficial transcripts (copies or online versions) are acceptable. Please submit electronically with the rest of your application.
  • No minimum grade point average (GPA) is required to be eligible to apply for a SickKids Research Summer Student position. However, these positions are highly competitive, so it’s to your advantage to have a strong GPA. That said, passion and genuine interest go a long way!

Due to the large volume of applications received, only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. Each scientist will conduct interviews and make final selections independent of the Research Training Centre.

The hiring supervisor will ask students to provide a reference letter during or after the interview stage. 

The reference letter should come from an individual who is familiar with your skills, and is best able to describe your past and/or current work/school experience (e.g., a professor, high school teacher, previous employer, volunteer supervisor, etc.).

  • In order to ensure that it remains confidential, the letter shouldn’t be sent to you or included in your application package. Your referee should email the reference letter directly to the hiring scientist(s) with the subject line: SickKids Summer Research Reference Letter - <Candidate’s Last Name>, <First Name>.  
  • There are no specific criteria your referee should address, but you can suggest that your referee consider describing your educational background, academic performance, relevant research training or work experience, characteristics, and abilities. Your referee should also highlight your achievements to date. Make sure that you provide your referee with a copy of your application and CV to refer to when writing your letter!  

A research summer student placement can be of any duration (with the exception of the Lunenfeld Summer Studentship and the Opportunity Summer Studentship, funded positions which must be 15 weeks) and the start dates and end dates, as well as hours per week, can be negotiated between each student and supervisor. Research Summer Students must be paid the minimum hourly rate of $15.50 + 6% vacation.

Students and their supervisors will negotiate working hours at the time of hire or start. 

SSuRe Program 2023 Job Postings

Last updated: January 18, 2023

Typically, students are asked to provide a reference letter at or after the interview stage. If a reference letter is required at the application stage, this will be noted in the job posting. 

Summer Research Project

With training and support from Muise Lab senior staff and students, the summer student will investigate a new candidate gene/pathway identified in our patients. The project will examine the gene's possible role in pathogenesis by looking at genetic results (understanding the genotype) and clinical details (reviewing the medical and family history information). If possible, the student will also perform functional analyses with a senior researcher using patients' samples (wet lab work) and learn techniques such as culturing cell lines, PCR, Sanger sequencing, and basic biological techniques (like western blots and preparing reagents/buffers). Based on the results, the student will explore current therapies to evaluate if any may be beneficial or contraindicated. At the end of the project, the student will present the findings to the Lab and potentially submit for publication.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to muise.summerprogram@gmail.com.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

Patients with invasive Streptococcus pneumoniae infection can develop hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS). They sustain an acute kidney injury because of thrombosed kidney glomeruli that can lead to death (10%) or end-stage kidney disease (15%). All patients with pneumococcal HUS (P-HUS) have high blood levels of bacterial sialidase. This enzyme cleaves terminal sialic acid residues from endothelial glycoproteins, exposing galactose termini instead. Sialic acid or galactose termini act as docking sites for distinct receptors on blood cells. Using exome sequencing, we discovered a novel form of HUS caused by loss-of-function mutations in the gene that encodes a sialyltransferase that adds sialic acid to galactose on nascent glycoproteins. The development of new therapies for both conditions has been hampered by our poor understanding of their pathophysiologies.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to mathieu.lemaire@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 25, 2023

Summer Research Project

As a member of our lab, you will have the opportunity to be involved in one or more of the following projects, and/or other related projects:

  1. Comparative policy analysis of regulatory and policy approaches to the regulation and reimbursement of precision therapeutics for children
  2. Development of a child-tailored value framework to guide health technology assessment for paediatric drugs and therapeutics
  3. Evaluation of an adapted intervention for the early diagnosis and referral of childhood cancers in Kenya and Cameroon
  4. Models of care for childhood cancer survivors in low and middle income countries

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to celine.roussel-bilokon@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

  • Clinical research:
    • Preparation of materials for research participants attending rheumatology clinic
    • Data collection
    • Data analysis
    • Drafting of manuscript and other mediums supporting knowledge dissemination

How to Apply

All interested applicants should send their SSuRe program application, CV and transcript to rheumatology.summerprogram@sickkids.ca. 

Incomplete applications and/or application that are not submitted to the summer program email address will not be considered.

All applicants will be contacted 1-2 weeks after the deadline to confirm receipt of their application. Interviews will be extended to applicants who the team feels may be the best fit for the position.

Good luck to all applicants!

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023 23:59 EST

Summer Research Project

TARGet Kids! is a large primary care research network for children in Canada. The overall goal of TARGet Kids! is to improve the health of Canadians by optimizing growth and development in early childhood. Since 2008, TARGet Kids! has involved 11,000 children and their families by collecting data on socio-demographic variables, anthropometric measurements, lifestyle factors, school and development, mental health status, and blood samples at each well-child visit.

In April 2020, we utilized the TARGet Kids! longitudinal cohort and launched the TARGet Kids! COVID-19 Study for Children and Families to understand the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canadian families. We have collected detailed data on young children and their parents including adherence to COVID-19 public health measures, school and childcare attendance, growth and development, and health behaviours. We are continuing this data collection to enhance our understanding on early child development, school, and health outcomes in children during and post the COVID-19 pandemic.

The student will conduct literature searches and create literature summaries, formulate Data Creation and Analysis Plans (DCP), present DCP at the group meeting, perform data cleaning and statistical analysis, properly interpret the results, prepare and deliver scientific presentations, and assist with preparation of manuscripts for submission to peer-reviewed journals.

Students with knowledge of epidemiology and training in statistical analysis are preferred.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to catherine.birken@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

March 15, 2023

Summer Research Project

Why do some patients with vascular malformations respond to sirolimus and others not so much? Undertaking clinical-genotypic correlation studies in patients with known mutations in the TEK-PTEN-PIK3CA-AKT-mTOR pathway. 

Over the past decade there has been an explosion in the awareness and management of vascular malformations. It has become widely recognized that vascular malformations are caused by either gain of function somatic mutations (majority) or by loss of function germline mutations (minority) in a a variety of genes that form a pathway of angiogenesis and growth. This pathway comprises the genes TEK, PTEN, PIK3CA, AKT and mTOR. Gain of function mutations in TEK and in PIK3CA have been widely described as causing localized or multifocal venous malformations, solitary lymphatic malformations, PIK3CA related overgrowth syndromes (PROS) and generalized lymphatic anomalies (GLA). Similarly PTEN loss of function germline mutations have been described as causing PTEN hamartoma (tumour) syndrome and as part of that some patients may also develop different types of vascular malformations including venous and arterial venous malformations.

Sirolimus (rapamycin) is a drug that blocks this pathway at the level of mTOR. Theoretically, patients with any mutation upstream of mTOR should respond to sirolimus and yet what has been found is that some of these malformations respond very well to sirolimus whereas others do not.

We have been undertaking genetic investigation of most patients with vascular malformations over the past five years and now have accumulated genetic results on about 70 patients of which over 50 have mutations in the TEK-PTEN-PIK3CA-AKT-mTOR pathway.

This student working on this would:

  • Update a genetics database that has been developed for all patients with vascular malformations
  • Assist the investigator in reviewing the charts of all patients with these malformations to determine the response to sirolimus.
  • Be involved in publishing this work as a case series of over 50 patients with known mutations, all of whom were commenced on sirolimus to determine the response to sirolimus. This work would be highly publishable and would help clinicians in future to decide on how best to manage such patients.
  • Attend the weekly vascular malformation (haematology) clinic which occurs on Wednesdays, and the vascular malformation (interventional radiology/surgery) clinic which occurs on Fridays.
  • Be exposed to a multidisciplinary clinic comprising many different subspecialties that see these patients.
  • Attend monthly vascular malformation rounds and a monthly vascular malformation combined multidisciplinary clinic.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to manuel.carcao@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

1. Validation of the CPCHECKlist - a new parent-reported checklist of comorbidities for children with non-ambulatory cerebral palsy and other neuromuscular disorders.

Roles and responsibilities: Recruitment, data collection, data analysis, abstract and presentation, manuscript preparation.

2. Validation of the PROOF questionnaires - patient & parent reported outcome measures for paediatric fractures.

Roles and responsibilities: Recruitment, data collection, data analysis, abstract and presentation, manuscript preparation.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to cate.barlow@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 3, 2023

Summer Research Project

Students will be involved in research that examine the factors that are associated with the burden of COVID-19 within Black and other racialized communities. 

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to upton.allen@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The mission of the Zani Lab is to use extracellular vesicles as therapeutic and diagnostic tools for fetal, neonatal, and paediatric conditions.

Extracellular vesicles (EVs) are highly stable membrane-bound nanoparticles that are released by all cells and mediate intercellular communication. They are powerful tools, as they carry bioactive cargo in the form of genetic material (RNA and DNA), proteins, and lipids.

The Zani Lab is investigating EVs as therapeutic agents for congenital diaphragmatic hernia, a birth defect. We are also interested in testing cargos that EVs carry from their cells of origin as a diagnostic tool for clinical conditions.

The role of the student in the summer will be to perform tissue harvest, cell culture, EV isolation, RNA/protein extractions, RT-qPCR, western blotting, tissue sectioning, and immunofluorescence. The student will also perform confocal imaging and analysis, but will not be involved in animal work, unless they express interest.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to lina.antounians@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 17, 2023

Summer Research Project

Our research plan for the student is to study a pedigree with HMD and use whole genome sequencing in combination with genome-wide linkage analysis to identify the disease causing genetic variant(s). The student will learn to analyze whole genome data including structural variants, transposons, single nucleotide polymorphisms, splice variants, epigenetic variants, and deletions/insertions. The student will learn to prioritize potential disease-causing variants based on predictive tools, population databases, protein expression database information and retinal relevance. Potential variants within linked regions will be prioritized. The student will analyse these candidate variants by performing segregation by PCR and sanger sequencing. Functional validation of potential variants will vary depending on the type of variant identified but will involve basic techniques such as RT-PCR, western blotting and immune-cytochemistry on patient derived lymphoblast or fibroblast cell lines. Linking new genes to eye diseases not only provides important and concrete information for patients but also opens research avenues that have the potential to develop into therapeutic approaches.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to kashif.ahmed@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 10, 2023

Summer Research Project

Dr. Pearson is a leader in the research of repeat instability diseases. Research in the Pearson Lab is focused on the mechanism of neurodegenerative and neuromuscular diseases. The summer student will be involved in a project characterizing DNA repair proteins, and their roles in modulating the repeat instability. The student will participate in biochemical, molecular, and cell biology assays, such as nuclease, polymerase, DNA repair assays, Western blot, and repeat instability analysis.

The student will be mentored by the senior staff and will be provided with the required support. They will also be encouraged to present their research at the annual Summer Student Symposium.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to peixiang.wang@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

The candidate will learn to look for pathogenic variants using a number of bioinformatics tools, and the subsequent variant validation and family segregation by PCR, Sanger sequence. The student will be exposed to R coding, primer design, PCR, electrophoresis; assessment of variants using diverse databases (gnomAD, ExAc, 1000 genomes, PolyPhen, sift, among others). Some projects might require functional validation on cDNA or cell lines. In addition the candidate will be exposed to the vocabulary surrounding diseases and what defines a phenotype.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to erika.tavares@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 20, 2023

Summer Research Project

Lupus is a life threatening, chronic, autoimmune disease where the body's immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissue. Genes play an important role in determining who will develop lupus.

We have genetic data and clinical longitudinal, repeated measures on thousands or children and adults with lupus. We are interested in exploring the genetics of disease features over time. Students will have the opportunity participate in research examining the genetics of particular SLE features or complications. Students will be part of the Rheumatology and Genetics & Genome Biology (GGB) research teams at SickKids, attending weekly meetings and participating in rounds. Activities include literature review, data cleaning, data analysis, meta-analysis, presentations and manuscript writing.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, and transcript to linda.hiraki@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The project will relate to using electron cryomicroscopy (cryoEM) for the structural analysis of protein complexes. Available projects relate to one of three research areas:

  1. Mycobacterial respiration
  2. V-type ATPases in synaptic vesicle loading
  3. Development of cryoEM methods (computational and/or specimen preparation)

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to jlr@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

Work in the Yeh laboratory focuses specifically on outcomes and interventions for children with multiple sclerosis and other neuroinflammatory disorders. The summer student would be involved in a project in one of the following areas: (1) Visual outcomes, specifically assessing associations between electrophysiological metrics (VEP), structural metrics (OCT) and lifestyle and clinical factors; (2) Correlates of physical activity and outcomes in children with neuroinflammation; (3) Outcomes in children with autoimmune encephalitis and other neuroinflammatory conditions. Data for these projects have been gathered. The student will focus on a specific project and will be in charge of data cleaning, analysis and a poster at the end of the summer. A senior trainee and/or research staff will be paired with the student to provide support.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV and transcript to ann.yeh@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 20, 2023

Summer Research Project

We are looking to recruit summer students from engineering, physics, computer science, mathematics, or related fields to work in a biomedical engineering lab that is focused image-guided surgery technology. Our project themes include medical robotics, 3D printing, focused ultrasound therapy, magnetic resonance imaging, computer vision, image processing, AI and machine learning.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to adam.waspe@sickkids.ca. In addition to the required application materials, a concise cover letter (1 page max) that outlines learning goals, scientific interests and skills/strengths would be appreciated.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

We study how immune dysfunctions underlie common brain disorders, using synthetic approaches in vitro. We are looking for talented students interested in learning genome engineering in human cells using CRISPR, developing new automated feeding devices for organoid cultures, or importing and applying computer-based tools for image or gene expression analyses. For wet-work, prior practical experience with molecular biology and pipet handling will be a big plus. An engineering problem-solving/DIY mindset will help with automation projects. For dry work, you must be able to scan external resources to import published tools and apply them to our projects.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, cover letter, and transcript to julien.muffat@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The NMDAR (N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor) is crucial for neuron signalling upon activation by its ligands, glutamate and glycine. Although NMDARs are widely known as ionotropic (i.e., they allow flow of ions through the channel pore), a growing body of evidence indicates that NMDARs can activate ion flux-independent, or noncanonical signalling. Our laboratory discovered that glycine occupancy of its binding site on the GluN1 subunit of NMDAR can mediate flux-independent signaling through clathrin-dependent internalization by recruiting the adaptor protein complex (Nature 2003) and that molecular control over non-ionotropic signalling was embedded within the structure of the NMDAR (PNAS 2021). Ion flux-independent signalling by NMDARs may be important in stroke, chronic pain and learning and memory. We explore the role NMDARs in brain and spinal cord function using electrophysiological, biochemical, cellular, genomic and behavioural approaches.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript, and reference letter to michael.salter@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 10, 2023

Summer Research Project

Moyamoya (MM) is a rare condition in which the blood vessels that supply blood to the brain (internal carotid arteries) become narrowed. This limits the flow of blood to the brain and increases risk of stroke.

Cerebrovascular reactivity (CVR) reflects the ability of the blood vessels to dilate in order to match tissue blood supply to increased demand and can be investigated by measuring the change in cerebral blood flow (CBF) or cerebral blood volume (CBV) that vasodilation induces. It is a valuable tool for assessing vascular health in pathologies, including steno-occlusive diseases like Moyamoya. CVR is measured using blood-oxygen-level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging. CVR is associated with increased apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC) in normal-appearing white matter, consistent with perfusion-related ADC changes. The effects of negative CVR in children, however, are not well understood.


Objective: i) To determine whether regions of negative CVR exhibit changes in ADC in normal-appearing WM of children with Moyamoya. ii) To determine the association between CVR and ADC with subcortical volumes.

The student will be responsible for a retrospective analysis of a consecutive cohort of children with Moyamoya and no history of stroke, age/sex matched controls and conduct quantitative measures on a number of MRI measures. These included diffusion-weighted, T1-weighted, and MRI-CVR. They will then conduct analysis on these measures, specifically between moyamoya patients and controls.

A background and/or familiarity with brain anatomy and neuroimaging would be an asset.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, and transcript to nomazulu.dlamini@sickkids.ca. It would be helpful for students to comment on their familiarity with brain anatomy or neuroscience.

Application Deadline

January 30, 2023

Summer Research Project

The student will be involved in helping to conduct our studies examining how memories are formed in mice.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to sheena.josselyn@sickkids.ca. Include a list of your skills and motivation for applying to the Josselyn lab. 

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The Monga Lab aims to optimize the quality of life of children and youth with both anxiety disorders and depression by improving outcomes measured across future clinical trials in these areas. We currently are working on two funded, large international projects which aim to develop and disseminate core outcome sets in both of these prevalent disorders.

A Core Outcome Set (COS) is a minimum set of outcomes that should be measured in a clinical trial, without precluding the measurement of other outcomes. The use of a COS in future clinical trials will improve outcome selection and measurement thereby ensuring comparability between trials and fostering meaningful comparisons of trials across meta-analyses and meta-syntheses. Our team has prioritized the engagement of youth with lived experience and caregivers of youth with lived experiences as well clinicians, researchers, and key international stakeholders in both of these projects.

To learn more about the development of a COS for adolescent depression treatment trials, please visit the International Network for Research Outcomes in Adolescent Depression Studies (IN-ROADS) Initiative.

Students who join our team will be able to participate in a project area that best suits their research interests and goals and will have the opportunity to be involved in:

  • The assessment and validation of outcome measurement instruments in adolescent depression and paediatric anxiety clinical trials
  • A scoping review focused on outcomes measured in published paediatric anxiety clinical trials
  • Analysis of input received from IN-ROADS workshops conducted with youth and family members
  • Other developing research areas

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, cover letter, and unofficial transcripts to riddhi.desai@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The primary research focus of the Pierro lab is developing novel strategies for the treatment of Necrotizing Enterocolitis (NEC), an unsolved clinical problem in neonatology and one of the major causes of morbidity and mortality in preterm neonates. Advances in this field have been made in the Pierro lab experimentally and in the translation to humans. We have established in our laboratory in vitro and in vivo research techniques and models. In vitro, we utilize intestinal epithelial cells or intestinal organoid units; in vivo, we use neonatal models of NEC in wild-type or transgenic rodents. To investigate the pathogenesis of NEC and novel therapeutic options for the disease, we investigate remote ischemic conditioning, breast-milk-derived products, as well as stem cells and stem cell-derived product administration. In addition, the Pierro lab has translated experimental observations in NEC research from bench to bedside and established a novel research network of first-class collaborating institutions in Canada, the USA, Sweden, The Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom. The student will investigate the intestinal tissue harvested from experimental mice. They will learn how to use various techniques, such as immunostaining, PCRs, and protein expression assays. The student will learn how to critically interpret the results, write a report, and will have the opportunity to present their work at the SSURE Research Symposium.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, and transcript to carol.lee.1388@gmail.com.

Application Deadline

January 31, 2023

Summer Research Project

The candidate will be part of a research group affiliated with The Hospital for Sick Children focusing on Neuroimaging. We are seeking a student to assist in developing image analysis tools for data acquired using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In addition, the student will support the analysis and management of research data for our research projects. Our lab is currently investigating haemodynamic, metabolic, and structural mechanisms of cerebrovascular diseases in children with sickle cell disease, stroke, diabetes, and sleep disorders. In addition, pre-clinical models of these diseases are being investigated.

The student will aid the team by improving and expanding our current tools used to analyze MRI data. These tools are typically implemented in MATLAB and Python scripts. Literature search is also an important component as the student will need to have a solid comprehension of current published research related to their project. We expect summaries of current work progress to be presented on a regular basis during team meetings.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript and publications (if available) to andrea.kassner@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

Cystic fibrosis (CF) is the most common genetic disease affecting children and young adults in Canada. The day-to-day management of CF is challenging. Although the outlook for people diagnosed with CF has improved substantially in recent years, there is no cure for this fatal disease and CF subjects suffer from day-to-day lung infections, called pulmonary exacerbations. Therefore, the medical community needs new technologies that can give them early and accurate information about regional lung function. The development of new, more sensitive, and radiation-free imaging techniques will provide physicians with detailed information about early changes in the lungs due to CF, which can be used to design more effective treatment of pulmonary exacerbations. This research project will assess the effectiveness of a new imaging technique for CF subjects, one that uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to visualize lung anatomy and function. MRI imaging is safe and able to provide detailed information about regional lung function and disease progression and response to treatment over time. The student will assist with MRI hardware and software development, data acquisition, image processing and analysis.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to giles.santyr@sickkids.ca.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

The Hamilton Lab investigates familial and other heart rhythm disorders that are often rare but have a large impact on years of potential life lost. Our lab focuses on identifying biomarkers for heart rhythm disorders. The pathophysiology of these disorders fincludes protein misexpression, resulting in exposure of immunogenic cryptic epitopes, amplifying the biomarker.

Our platform has been applied to Arrhythmogenic Cardiomyopathy, Brugada Syndrome and Congenital Heart Block resulting in a highly accurate test for each condition (published: 2018 and 2020; and in prep.). We will expand these studies to additional disorders including other cardiomyopathies and arrhythmia disorders. Our investigations of endemic heart rhythm disorders currently include Chagas disease (South America) and Lyme disease.

CPVT and postoperastive JET are two additional disorders of interest. We complete translational studies with the potential for practice change and aims to have the student involved in a contributing role leading to co-authorship. Opportunities for clinical exposure to arrhythmia clinics, catheter ablation and device procedures are available.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to robert.hamilton@sickkids.ca

Application Deadline

January 30, 2023

Summer Research Project

The Mallipatna lab is currently creating anatomically accurate computer based 3D models of healthy and diseased paediatric eyes. Working with other members of the lab, the summer student will have the opportunity to create model eyes and study the feasibility and acceptability of using model eyes for medical training.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript  and writing sample to 3dleuko@gmail.com.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

The Gallie lab is conducting a quality improvement project to study the acceptability and feasibility of a novel web-based point-of-care database for retinoblastoma. The student would assist with obtaining consent, analyzing data, interpreting data and sharing results.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript and writing sample to rbstudentapplications@gmail.com.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

Summer Research Project

This project will investigate the clinical outcomes of grafting paediatric burn patients using the model of care provided at Sickkids. This is a two stage approach which was reviewed previously and the full model of care requires clinical outcome information in order to be published for other paediatric centers. This work is part of a larger project which reviews the quality of care of delivery of paediatric burn care in Canada. The student will also have access to clinical weekly multidisciplinary rounds and may attend relevant clinics to learn more about the specialty area of burns and scar management.

How to Apply

Please email your SSuRe program application, CV, transcript to jennifer.zuccaro@sickkids.ca.

Your letter should outline why you are interested in this project. Excellent communication skills and working in a team are essential for this position.

Application Deadline

February 28, 2023

What does the SSuRe Program curriculum include?

The SSuRe Program is here to support you from day one, from orientation and training to creating a poster to present at Symposium Day! 

Any high school or undergrad student working on a research project with a SickKids scientist over the summer months is warmly invited to participate in the SSuRe Program activities. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, where at SickKids you’re working, or how you’re getting paid — join us!

The SSuRe Program runs two research summer student-specific orientation sessions in May prior to the commencement of the program’s curricular activities — in the first and last week of May. Orientation includes a welcome address from our SSuRe Program committee chairs, information about clinical research services and research ethics, fire safety training, and occupational health services, including your occupational health appointment. You’ll get auto enrolled into the appropriate session, depending on your start date.

You’ll also get priority access to lab safety training sessions. The first sessions are held over the second week of May and the second sessions are held over the first week of June. 

If your start date does not correspond with these orientation and training dates—no problem! You’ll just attend the usual SickKids’ orientation and training, and we’ll post the orientation slides on our internal summer program pages. 

Each week, a leading SickKids scientist provides a dynamic, engaging talk intended to teach you something about a different area of research happening in the hospital and research institute. By the end of the summer, you'll have a better understanding and appreciation of the key roles basic and clinical research have in advancing our knowledge of human health and disease.  

The program also runs two skills focused seminars: winning posters and effective abstracts and a “how to talk to strangers” networking seminar. These seminars will teach you how to translate your research in a way that’s engaging, easy to understand, and inspiring. You’ll get best practices on writing effective abstracts, and give you the design ideas, tools, and software suggestions you need to create dynamic, eye-catching posters—and hands-on practice and expert knowledge about how to meet and talk to new people about yourself and your research.

Wondering what you might do with your science degree?

Come to Career Night to meet and network with current and SickKids Research Institute individuals who work in a variety of science careers. Learn about what they do, how they got there, and how they balance their work and home lives.  

Symposium Day gives you the full conference experience! You’ll submit an abstract, create a poster, present your work, and network with colleagues and scientists.

All non-graduate summer students doing research at SickKids are invited to participate. We’ll also choose the student with the best abstract from each of the seven Research Institute programs and invite you to give an oral presentation and a chance to win a prize! We’ll also give out prizes to the student with the best poster from each of the seven Research Institute programs.

Summer Research Funding Opportunities

The SickKids First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Summer Studentship provides a full 15-week full-time summer student stipend (approximately $9,000) to three incoming SickKids summer students who are First Nations, Métis or Inuit.

Apply on SlideRoom

The SSuRe Program provides $2,000 for up to 35 SickKids Research Institute scientists to support Research Summer Student salaries. The funding is generously provided from the Lunenfeld Summer Studentship.

Lunenfeld Studentships are awarded directly to the scientist and Research Summer Students supported by this funding will be required to participate in Symposium Day by submitting and abstract and presenting a poster/oral presentation. 

Your hiring scientist will let you know if you are a Lunenfeld Studentship funded student.  

The SSuRe Program began a partnership with the Community of Support Research Application Support Initiative (COS-RASI) at the University of Toronto to help support students who are Indigenous, Black, Filipino, economically disadvantaged, or who self-identify as disabled. This program targets students who are interested in finding summer positions in health science research to help support their career development in the field of medicine.

The partnership includes support in applying to centralized positions, mentorship opportunities and access to all SSuRe Program initiatives. 

The Opportunity Summer Studentship is valued at $3,000 each and will be awarded to the top ten ranked applicants to the COS-RASI program.

For more information on how to apply to the RASI stream, visit the COS page on the University of Toronto website through the link below.

View COS information

For external funding information, please visit the What's New in Research page on the University of Toronto's website through the link below.

View Funding Opportunities

Summer Research Funding Results

Coming soon!

Community of Support Summer Studentship 2022

  • Asiya Ali
  • Idil Abdi
  • Juliane Feliciano
  • Marie Jo Abdul-Hay
  • Nana Kwesi Amartei Brocke
  • Sahba Eskandari
  • Samantha Tse
  • Sara Ali
  • Sinéad Osivwemu

First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Summer Studentship 2022

  • Kristine Keon
  • Natalie Robitaille

Lunenfeld Summer Studentship 2022

  • Amanda Headrick
  • Amber Lee
  • Ana Janic
  • Anisa Khalfan
  • Ariane Isaac-bertrand
  • Avneet Ghotra
  • Daniel D'Souza
  • Deja Allison
  • Edward Chen
  • Fiorelle Aguilar
  • Grace Parish
  • Heili Poolsaar
  • Huilin Niu
  • Jessica Guo
  • Joelle  Peresin
  • Joy Khalil
  • Junlin Ren
  • Justin Xu
  • Kate Tsiandoulas
  • Matthew Tang
  • Melanie Posiewko
  • Natasha Trehan
  • Nathaniel Vo
  • Nevatha Kingsley
  • Nora Hodgson
  • Pegi Kaimi
  • Priscilla Fung
  • Sabrina Yang
  • Shurabi Anphalagan
  • Sofia Olaizola
  • Stefan Vislavski
  • Subin Park
  • Taylor Harris
  • Zhixin Zhang

Community of Support Summer Studentship 2021

  • Daniel Gaim
  • Deena Hassan
  • Hanifa Hasan
  • Isaiah Abrahams
  • Layla Ahmed
  • Lujayn Mahmoud
  • Maanasa Koripalli
  • Megan Clarke
  • Noyangbe Yesufu
  • Sonika Kumari
  • Tumi Olaoye

Lunenfeld Summer Studentship 2021

  • Abby Tafler
  • Addison Weatherhead
  • Adrian Sammy
  • Adrian Tanjala
  • Akash Kothari
  • Alisia Pan
  • Amanda Fregonas
  • Andrew Dissanayake
  • Anshika Jain
  • Arteen Torabi-Marashi
  • Benjamin Zhang
  • Bhagyashree Sharma
  • Brian Tsang
  • Bushra Haque
  • Cale Kooyman
  • Cathy Zhang
  • Charul Narain
  • Christina Papaioannou
  • Christopher Chu
  • Claire Howard
  • David Chen
  • David Friedland
  • Edgar Martinez Chavez
  • Ekambir Saran
  • Elena Huang
  • Elizabeth Wei
  • Emma Huang
  • Eric Godden
  • Fatima Ahmad
  • Felicia Balsamo
  • Gal Armon
  • Gee Hung Leo Cheong
  • Giselle Menezes
  • Helena Teng
  • Jaime Turk
  • Jasmine Dhaliwal
  • Jason Chung
  • Jiang (Barry) Nan
  • Jiayin (Emma) Xie
  • Jonathan Chung
  • Jordyn Burnett
  • Josh Gopaul
  • Joshua Neposlan
  • Joshua Dworsky-Fried
  • Joyce Ang
  • Kaitlin Lees
  • Karen Li
  • Katherine Bailey
  • Keiran Pace
  • Kevin Auw-Yang
  • Kha Nguyen
  • Kristen Schulz
  • Kyobin Hwang
  • Lauren Sano
  • Lloyd Fan
  • Lu Yi (Lina)  Li
  • Lucas Aragao
  • Lydia Leung
  • Madeleine Harris
  • Marium Kiwan
  • Masum Patel
  • Matthew Mueller
  • Max Somer
  • Mayura Panjalingam
  • Melissa Misztal
  • Michelle Prunier
  • Nykan Mirchi
  • Olivia Moir
  • Parneon Zakikhan
  • Patrick Grzela
  • Penelope McCreath
  • Priya Patel
  • Rob Taylor
  • Sahar Hoveyda
  • Sarah Yang
  • Sarah Yang
  • Sean Borkhoff
  • Shayna Tierney
  • Shirley Yu
  • Shiv Kandappah
  • Sonja Sulstarova
  • Sophia Farcas
  • Sriprada Thallapalli
  • Sufyan Rather
  • Sydney Steiman
  • Thalia Pandolfi
  • Thrmiga Sathiyamoorthy
  • Tiffany  Ayoub
  • Travis Wang
  • Vanessa Chen
  • Veronica Grad
  • Walter  Byrne
  • Wanyao (Yoyo) Chen
  • Wendy  Wu
  • Wendy Zhai
  • Yifan Duan
  • Yuman (Wendy) Zhai
  • Zhenyu Li

Underrepresented Minority Summer Studentship 2019

Kristine Keon

Lunenfeld Summer Studentship 2019

  • Abby Krupski
  • Adrian Che
  • Allen Bao
  • Avery Bailey
  • Benjamin Liu
  • Catherine Campbell
  • Deanna Kim
  • Hyunjin Kim
  • Isabel Zhang
  • Jee Woo Park
  • Justine Ziolkowski
  • Karen Li
  • Kimberly Gayle
  • Kugarja Sivanesan
  • Lauren Pickel
  • Madeline Elder
  • Mansuba Rana
  • Michael Groff
  • Mikaela Palandra
  • Nilasha Thayalan
  • Pranipa Ernest
  • Seyed Amir Ali Adel
  • Stella Schneckenburger
  • Susanna Lee
  • Tamara Dubljevic
  • Tarnem Afify
  • Victoria Wicks
  • Vincent So
  • Yiyao Yu
  • Yuen Tung Natalie Au
  • Zetao Liu
  • Zi Ling Yang
  • Zoe Friedman

Underrepresented Minority Summer Studentship 2018

Timothy Seto

Lunenfeld Summer Studentship 2018

  • Adam Minich
  • Alexandr Sacha Magder
  • Alexis Karsli
  • Angelo Ricci
  • Anson Hui
  • Biren Dave
  • Brooke Green
  • Caberry (Wei Yang Yu)
  • Darren Chai
  • David Yanofsky
  • Elaine Thai
  • Emma Swaffield
  • Ergi Duli
  • Farhan Mahmood
  • Grace Regent
  • Ido Nofech Mozes
  • Isabel de Verteuil
  • Janice Pang
  • Jeremy Wu
  • Joshua Charkow
  • Kate Bottomley
  • Lucia Santos
  • Nadine Tan
  • Pranjan Gandhi
  • Sara Rizakos
  • Sarah Moldaver
  • Shikha Patel
  • Shuzin (Cindy) Lin
  • Suvarna Moharir
  • Talia Wolfe
  • Tasneem Islam
  • Timothy Seto
  • Tse (Ben) Chen
  • Victor Adarquah
  • Yifang (Octavia) Weng
  • Zaynah Khan

Underrepresented Minority Summer Studentship 2017

Yitong Yang

Lunenfeld Summer Studentship 2017

  • Ahmad Shakeri
  • Alexa Desimone
  • Alexander Friesen
  • Amna Zulfiqar
  • Cadia Chan
  • Christian F Delayun
  • D'Arcy Prendergast
  • Dhia Azzouz
  • Do Young Kim
  • Emma Sypes
  • Erin Jacobs
  • Henry Yuheng Liu
  • James An
  • Katina Zheng
  • Kyra Moura
  • Lamia Hossain
  • Liel Cohn
  • Maxwell Gelkopf
  • Phyllis Yiu
  • Randolph Kissoon
  • Rhea Jangra
  • Ronwell Joshua Pusong
  • Salar Sadri
  • Sarah Pol
  • Tasneem Islam
  • Thenuka Thanabalasingam
  • Victoria O'Driscoll
  • Xiahuizi Li
  • Yun-Kyo Kim

Symposium Day Awards

Coming soon!

Cell Biology

  • Ekam Saran
  • Carina Lyons
  • Tima Al Shammaa

Child Health Evaluative Sciences

  • Estreya Cohen
  • Leighton Schreyer
  • Nicholas Chan

Developmental & Stem Cell Biology

  • Rachel Morley
  • Luiza Lopes Pontual
  • Taylor Harris

Genetics & Genome Biology

  • Nikola Reko
  • Jordan Lindzon

Molecular Medicine

  • Kana Ogawa

Neurosciences & Mental Health

  • Olivia Hendrikx
  • Natalie Robitaille

Translational Medicine

  • Jonathan Chung
  • Subin Park
  • Juliane Feliciano

Other

  • Rebecka Quinn

 

Cell Biology

  • Joyce Ang
  • Kaitlin Lees

Child Health Evaluative Sciences

  • Emma Huang

Developmental & Stem Cell Biology

  • Lucas Aragao
  • Mohammed Said

Genetics & Genome Biology

  • Amy Pan

Molecular Medicine

  • Karen Li

Neurosciences & Mental Health

  • Ke Xin (Kristina) Zhang

Translational Medicine

  • Akash Kothari
  • Jonathan Chung

Frequently asked questions

Eligibility

Yes, the 2023 SSuRe program is running this year!

Yes, non-degree students are eligible to apply to Research Summer Student positions, as long as you will be going back to school in the fall. See eligibility criteria above.

If you are in your last year of high-school and entering into a college or university program in the fall, following the SSuRe Program, you are eligible to Research Summer Student positions. 

Yes, as long as you have applied to, or have been accepted into, a research degree program in the fall following the SSuRe Program, you are eligible to Research Summer Student positions. 

No, you are not eligible to be hired as a Research Summer Student. However, you may be eligible to be hired into a different research student or research staff position. Please contact the scientist(s) you are interested in working with to see if they have any open research student opportunities available. 

Yes, international students are eligible to apply to the program. However, international students will need to comply with all COVID-19 quarantine protocols in place at the time the program starts. Students must be located within Ontario during their summer placement.

The SSuRe Program activities officially start at the beginning of May and run for 15 weeks until Symposium Day, which is held in mid-August. Depending on how much later you are able to begin work, this may not be enough time for you to conduct sufficient research for your abstract presentation on Symposium Day.  

Most students will begin on the first day of the SSuRe Program and will have ample time to work on their projects, which may put you at a disadvantage when submitting your abstract for Symposium Day. Please consider this before applying to the program. Please contact the scientist(s) you are interested in working with to ask if they would be willing to accept your application under these circumstances. 

If you are a medical student, your Research Summer Student position will begin June 1, or the first business day after June 1. 

We suggest that you limit your applications to five scientists. Send your applications to those you are most interested in and best suit your interests.

If a scientist’s name is no longer on the SSuRe Program website, they are no longer accepting applications for a Research Summer Student. They are either conducting interviews or have already selected a student.

The SickKids Research Volunteer Program is entirely separate from the SickKids Summer Research Program (SSuRe). All SSuRe students must be paid at least minimum wage plus vacation. 

Of course! Please see applying to posted and unposted positions above.

All SSuRe program activities (orientation, seminars, career day, and symposium) are expected to take place in-person. Please keep an eye on this page for any updates.

Depending on your summer project, you may be working onsite or remotely to conduct your research. Please connect with your supervisor for more information.

All summer students, including students working remotely, are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19: received two doses of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine series or a single dose of a one dose COVID-19 vaccine series that is listed for emergency use by the World Health Organization or approved by Health Canada.

During your onboarding, you may also be asked to provide proof of immunization for the following: Tuberculosis (TB) status, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella, Hepatitis B and Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis. 

Yes! We suggest that you limit your applications to five scientists.

You'll need to discuss remote work arrangements with your supervisor(s). Please note, summer students working remotely must be located within Ontario to connect to the SickKids network. 

Transcripts

If you do not have university transcripts available, one from high school would be acceptable. First semester marks or mid-term marks are also acceptable, if available from your institution.

If you do not have a transcript from your current year, one from your previous year would be acceptable (i.e. you are in third year but send second year marks).

Reference Letter(s)

Yes. A reference should be from someone you feel would be best able to describe your past or current work/school experience. If you are not sure if a reference letter from a particular individual would be acceptable, please contact the scientist(s) to whom you wish to apply to ask.

This is at the discretion of each scientist. Please contact the scientist(s) in advance of submitting a full application to ask.

You may address your reference letter to: SickKids Hiring Manager.

Hiring

Due to the number of applications scientists receive each year, only those applicants who are selected for an interview will be contacted by the scientist. If you have not heard about your application by the end of March, you likely have not been selected. 

No enrollment necessary! Once you’ve been offered a Research Summer Student position, you’ll complete the onboarding package sent to you by the scientist (or their delegate). From there, we’ll auto-enroll you onto our SSuRe Program newsletter mailing list—so make sure you check the email you provide in the RTC Registry! 

Due to the volume of applications received by each scientist, only applicants chosen for an interview will be contacted. We suggest you wait until after the application deadline to inquire with the scientist. If you haven't heard back by early April, it is likely that the scientist has filled the position. 

Please include the SSuRe program application form, cover letter,  CV/resume, transcript(s), and one reference letter when applying to SSuRe program positions.

Contact the RTC

Have a question? Get in touch with us today!

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