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Summer Scholar Research Program

2015 Summer Scholars and Directors
 2015 Summer Scholars and Directors

2016 CVM Summer Scholar Research Program:




2016 CVM Summer Scholar Research Program Orientation
Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Classroom 2226, Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Ames, IA

2016 CVM Research Day Poster Session, Recognition Luncheon and Program
Friday, August 5, 2016
Scheman Building, Iowa State University campus, Ames, IA

Poster Session  10:00-11:30 am, SchemanBuilding, 2nd Floor Lobby
Luncheon and Program  12:00-1:30 pm, Scheman Building, Rooms 220-240

Click here for the 2016 CVM Summer Scholar Research Program brochure.

Learn more about the program.

Frequently Asked Questions 





About the Program:

The Summer Scholar Research Program is designed to introduce veterinary medicine students to research in a wide array of areas such as clinical medicine, animal science, public health, epidemiology, pharmacology, biomechanics, neuroscience, immunology, parasitology, molecular genetics and cellular or molecular pathology. Participants choose to investigate specific issues that match their interest and the work of an established researcher. Scholars will work with faculty mentors and other research personnel for approximately three months (May-August). Through hands-on experiences, seminars and tours, students will gain valuable perspectives on the exciting roles played by veterinarians in biomedical and public health research.

Special courses and journal clubs will assist scholars in developing critical thinking skills, preparing hypothesis-based proposals, designing statistically sound experiments, and appropriate interpretation and presentation of data. The training program is offered through Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine, and applications for participants are being sought from students enrolled in ALL colleges and schools of veterinary medicine in the U.S.


Who is Eligible to Participate:

The program is open to first- and second-year veterinary students from any college of veterinary medicine. Students enrolled in graduate programs are NOT eligible to participate.


CVM Summer Scholar Research Program is funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, Merial Limited, and additional funds at the ISU College of Veterinary Medicine.  Each scholar will receive $459.00 per week for the entire 13 week program (1 week of vacation is allowed, but must be approved by scholar's faculty mentor).

Application Procedures:

Deadline for scholar applications:  Thursday, February 4, 2016
If you want to expand your mind by working in a stimulating research environment, submit an application on-line by 11:59 pm on Thursday, February 4, 2016 (online application)Students, please indicate on your application if you have discussed a potential research project with a faculty mentor already.

Research Scholar On-line application will request the following information:

  • A brief résumé
  • Names and phone numbers of two references
  • One-page personal statement (related to the research program -- what you bring to the program or hope to gain as a participant)

Selection Criteria:

  • Work and research interests/experience
  • Stated long-term goals
  • Communication skills
  • Potential for success
  • Academic performance (GPA of 3.0 or higher)
  • Preference is given to applicants who have not previously participated in the program


Deadline for faculty mentor abstracts: Wednesday, December 16, 2015.

Each year completed Mentor Abstract forms are to be submitted via email (click here) to the Office of Research and Graduate Studies at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Iowa State University.  Mentors, please indicate on the form if you have discussed your project with a potential scholar.

Match with Research Mentors:

The match between a Research Scholar and a Faculty Mentor is central to the Summer Scholar Research experience. Once students are selected as Research Scholars, several steps occur to create the appropriate match. 

Faculty mentors will have submitted a research abstract describing an important problem to be investigated and specific aims associated with the proposed research project. Then:

  1. Current year's Mentor Abstracts will be uploaded to the CVM Summer Scholar Research Program website toward the end of December.
  2. The scholars are required to rank their top three preferences for participating mentors/projects. Please complete the project rankings section in the Summer Scholar online application.
  3. Student applicants will be asked to set up meetings with potential mentor matches. 
  4. If mutually agreed upon and ample funding is available, matches are made by the program directors.
  5. The student applicants will be notified about the matching process via email.

Areas of Emphasis:

Areas to be emphasized in research training include:

  • Cutting edge approaches & technologies in cellular and molecular biology research
  • Critical thinking skills in research
  • Scientific writing
  • Animal use in research
  • Ethics in research
  • Hypothesis-based research proposal preparation
  • Experimental design and data analysis
  • Career opportunities for DVMs in biomedical research, laboratory animal medicine and public health

Nondiscrimination Policy

Iowa State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, age, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex, marital status, disability, or status as a U.S. veteran.  Inquiries can be directed to the Director of Equal Opportunity and Diversity, 3680 Beardshear Hall, (515) 294-7612.

Contact Information

Office of Research & Graduate Studies
College of Veterinary Medicine
Iowa State University
2526 Vet Med Administration
Ames, Iowa 50011-1250

Faculty Program Director:
Dr. Mark Ackermann, 515-294-3647, mackerma@iastate.edu

Faculty Program co-Directors:
Dr. Eric Rowe, 515-294-7729, erowe@iastate.edu
Dr. Bradley Blitvich, 515-294-9861, blitvich@iastate.edu

For further information, contact:
Lynn Bagley, Program Coordinator
Office of Research & Graduate Studies
Phone: 515-294-1931
Fax: 515-294-8956

Merial Veterinary Scholars Program

The official Merial Veterinary Scholars Program's website: