Summer Research Program

The School of Dental Medicine offers the opportunity for interested dental students to participate in a mentored summer research program. Selected students will receive a stipend plus additional funding to defray travel expenses for research presentations at scientific meetings.

The main Student Research page will have the most up-to-date information - including the application deadline.

Student research projects completed in previous years can be found in the Student Research Results section. 

Interested students should follow the application instructions for submission guidelines. 

Completed applications and any questions should be submitted to:

Dr. Catherine Demko

General Program Details


The School of Dental Medicine seeks to foster an interest in scientific investigation, involve Dental Students in research activities, and encourage ongoing research partnerships between students and faculty. This program promotes an environment of scientific inquiry within the School and is highly valued as an enrichment experience in the dental school REAL curriculum.  


The goals of the Summer Research Program include:

  • Participation in the process of a scientific investigation
  • Focus on a content area of mutual interest to the both student and faculty mentor
  • First-hand knowledge and methodology experience gained

Students participating in the program will collect, analyze, and interpret the project data under the guidance of their faculty mentor. Upon completion of data analysis, students should be able to present their results at the annual SODM Professional Day and one national meeting.

Program Participation

After consultation with a faculty mentor, students submit a brief application describing their proposed project. Project parameters are left to the discretion of the faculty mentor, but projects should be of a reasonable scope in order to allow completion within the allotted time frame and meaningful student contribution.

During the summer session, there will be scheduled seminars and discussions for research students. 

Research Financial Support

Each research student will receive a summer stipend, with additional funds to defray travel expenses associated with presentation of their research at a scientific meeting. 

Student Research and IRB Submission

In order to complete a student research opportunity, it may be necessary to obtain Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval. Not all projects need IRB approval, but be advised that most do, including clinical research, survey and questionnaire administration, and chart reviews. Additionally, it is important to note that even if students will be working under a previously approved IRB protocol, it is still required that students be added to the protocol via a Personnel Change Request to the IRB. Use the Student Research IRB Fact vs. Fiction document to learn more about student involvement in the IRB process. Additional information can be found in the IRB Submission section of the site (Research >> Research Support).