The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) is dedicated to building a diverse and highly-skilled workforce to support the growing regenerative medicine economy right here in California.
One of the ways we do this is through our SPARK educational internship program. The SPARK awards—also known as the Summer Program to Accelerate Regenerative medicine Knowledge— support summer research internships for high school students at leading stem cell institutes in California.
While the Bridges internships for undergraduate and master’s graduate students take place year-round, the SPARK internships are currently underway across California and are already providing high school students an invaluable opportunity to gain hands-on training in stem cell research at some of the leading research facilities in the state.
The SPARK program specifically selects students who represent the diversity of California’s population, particularly those who might not otherwise have opportunities to take part in research internships due to socioeconomic constraints.
SPARK students spend the summer learning about stem cells and regenerative medicine and will conduct a six-week research internship in a stem cell lab. At the end of their program, students get to show off their hard work by presenting their research at the SPARK annual conference. Stay tuned for more updates as the program concludes!
In addition to showcasing their research, the bright young scientists are sharing their experience through social media, and we’ve compiled some of their submissions so far. To see more of their social media submissions—plus more updates and news from CIRM—be sure to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
Currently, there are 11 active SPARK programs located in Northern and Southern California. Each program has its own application process and way of selecting students for their SPARK program. If you are a student, teacher or family member interested in learning more information about how to apply or when application deadlines are, please visit the CIRM website.