Apply for National Lab Summer Internships by January 10

November 19, 2018

US Department of Energy National Laboratories
Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI) program


The Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI) program encourages undergraduate students and recent graduates to pursue science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) careers by providing research experiences at the Department of Energy (DOE) laboratories. Selected students participate as interns appointed at one of 17 participating DOE laboratories/facilities. They perform research under the guidance of laboratory staff scientists or engineers on projects supporting the DOE mission. The SULI program is sponsored and managed by the DOE Office of Science’s, Office of Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists (WDTS) in collaboration with the DOE laboratories/facilities. Each DOE laboratory/facility offers different research opportunities.

At Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL), the 2019 summer internship will run from June 3 to August 9. Application deadline is January 10, 2019.

How can GCSP scholars apply to SULI and best indicate ORNL as first choice lab and/or designate that they have made a specific connection with an ORNL mentor and would like to participate in a project with that mentor?

  • The applicant should apply to the WARS applicant system, making certain to select ORNL as first choice laboratory and mention the name of the mentor they want to participate with in the Research Interests portion of the application. If there is not a mentor connection as of yet or if the applicant is not fully committed to that mentor, then that part is not required or recommended as listing the mentor name could dissuade other mentors from selecting the applicant.
  • The applicant should make certain to redact any personally identifiable information (PII) and notify references listed as soon as the application is submitted. Applicants will be deemed ineligible if PII is not redacted or if both references are not submitted by the January 10, 2019 deadline. The status of the references can be tracked on the applicant account page. WARS will require the applicant to choose a “different” second choice lab; however first choice labs have sole selection rights for ~ four weeks – until spots are all claimed. The final date for offers and notifications is April 3, 2019.

How can GCSP scholars best highlight their involvement with the program on SULI applications?

  • The Research Interests section of the application is the best place for that type of information.

Other tips for the SULI application:

  • The redaction of PII and ensuring that both letters of recommendation and all transcripts are the most critical items. There are absolutely no second chances for failure to comply.
  • As SULI spots for each national lab are limited, the applicants may very well be selected by a second choice lab when round 2 opens (approximately 4 weeks after the round 1 selections begins) if the spots at their first choice lab are filled before a mentor selects them from that first choice lab. So they should carefully consider the best choice for their second lab option as well.
  • Review these application tips for all ORNL opportunities. 

See links below for more ORNL programs, which vary in terms of application deadlines, benefits, and eligibility requirements. 

Internships at other national labs:

Los Alamos National Lab, - Engineering Undergraduate Internship Program and others

National Renewable Energy Lab