Neurological Surgery Summer Student Program

The UW Medicine Department of Neurological Surgery Summer Student Program provides “Bench to Bedside” exposure in the field of neurosciences.

Established in 2008 by Richard G. Ellenbogen, M.D., Professor and Chair of the UW Department of Neurological Surgery, the program provides students seeking summer lab placements the opportunity to explore basic and clinical neurosciences. 

Our hope is that students will be so excited by their work that they will desire to pursue an academic career in research and/or medicine.


Mission Statement

Our mission is to recruit and educate a wide spectrum of students from diverse backgrounds, focusing on those under-represented in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), and broaden their knowledge base in the field of biomedical research, including translational, clinical and basic research; and to inspire students to pursue a career in research, medicine or allied fields, especially in Neuroscience.

We are proud to announce that the program has recently received NIH support.

Participation Includes:

  • Eight week lab placement in one of our neuroscience labs
  • Weekly Neurological Surgery Grand Round Lectures
  • Weekly Neuroscience Faculty Lectures
  • OR Observation
  • Student presentation of individual program focus
  • Stipends are set by the NIH at $3,200 over 8 weeks for college students and $2,667 for high school students. (Note: high school or recent high school graduates must be 18 years of age or older to participate.) Limited housing stipends (no meals or transportation) are available for 3-4 out of area students.

Every year our department invites a group of talented and highly motivated students interested in Neurosciences to participate in our 8-week Neurological Surgery Summer Student Program. This consists of a lab placement, attendance at Neurological Surgery Grand Rounds, OR observations, Friday talks by faculty to this group, and a final student Power Point presentation and graduation in front of family, friends and mentors. Founded in 2008, the program has hosted 88 students (including 9 Rainier Scholars) from 56 different schools. Twenty-four neurological surgery mentors have been involved and 22 Friday seminar speakers have volunteered time to talk with our summer group. Fourteen of our clinical faculty have given their time to afford shadowing opportunities for our students. Several students from our earliest classes have now been accepted into medical school, and many of the high school students have gone on to neuroscience or pre-med studies in college. We actively encourage students of color and limited means to participate and are proud to be an intern site for the Rainier Scholars program.

Tentative Summer 2022 Dates

  • Applications Open: 11/1/2021
  • Applications Deadline: 1/3/2022, 5pm PST
  • Admissions Notification: 3/1/2022 – 3/15/2022
  • Program-Sponsored Housing Check-In: 6/19/2022
  • Program Orientation: 6/20/2022
  • Program Start Date: 6/20/2022
  • Program End Date: 8/12/2022
  • Program-Sponsored Housing Check-Out: 8/12/2022

NSSSP Program Stats 


  • Number of complete applications submitted:
  • Number of students accepted:
  • Average GPA of accepted students:
  • Number of states from which completed apps were submitted:

How to Apply

Please note the following requirements if you are considering applying for the summer of 2020:

  • You must be 18 years of age or older by the first day of the program
  • You must be either a US citizen or have permanent residency status. Visa holders are not eligible.
  • University undergraduate students may apply if they are 18 years of age and older and are U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Graduate students are not eligible.
  • High School students may apply if they are 18 years of age or older by the first day of the program and are U.S. citizens or permanent residents
  • You must have current immunizations and TB test results through the program end date.
  • Out of area students will have housing stipends available but are responsible for their own meals and transportation.

Required application materials

  • Letter of interest
  • Current resume
  • Unofficial Transcript
  • One letter of recommendation (from a faculty member in STEM)

Register for an account to begin your application


  • Merit based aid is defined as academic scholarships
  • Need based aid is defined as student loans
  • A minimum 3.20 GPA or higher is required
  • NSSSP administrative office located at 908 Jefferson Street, Seattle, WA (across from Harborview Medical Center)
  • Students will be placed in various lab locations across Seattle


For general inquiries, please email

For website or technical issues, please email

Online Giving

Please consider making a donation to support our Neurological Surgery Summer Student Program through the UW Foundation.