Frequently Asked Questions about the HCII Summer Undergraduate Research Program

Applying to the program and notifications

When can I apply to the summer program?
The application for the HCII's Summer Research Program program is typically open over the winter months. We are no longer accepting applications for Summer 2024 program. 

I applied to the program and I have not heard back. How and when will I be notified?
All applicants, regardless of whether or not they are receiving an offer, will be notified via email. Most will know by mid-March but due to the high volume of applicants it may take a little longer. Please be patient with us as we take the time to thoroughly review each application.

I see there is an option to upload a copy of my resume, transcripts and letters of recommendation. Do I have to include these?
Your statement of purpose and resume are required. While the other materials (transcripts and letters of recommendation) are not required, they are strongly encouraged. 

I submitted my application, but need to update it. How do I go about updating my application?
You can log in and make changes to your application up to the submission deadline (Jan 26 2024 at 11:59 ET). 

I applied last year and was accepted into the program, but had to decline. Do I need to reapply?
Yes, you must reapply to be considered.

Can I submit additional materials to strengthen my application?
Yes. If you would like to submit additional materials, please upload them in the Supplemental Information section of your online application. 

My school is on the quarter system and ends after May 28th, can I still apply to the program? 
Students are expected to be able to be available for the duration of the program. If you are on the quarter system and this would affect your availability, please be sure to indicate that in your application.

Am I eligible for the program if I am an international student?
If you are an international student already studying in the US, you are eligible to apply. Note, however, that the majority of our funding does come from the National Science Foundation, which requires recipients to be undergraduate students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents, but we do have other funding available for undergraduate students who are not US citizens or permanent residents. 

Am I eligible for the program if I am graduating this spring?
Unfortunately, no. Students who will have received their bachelor's degrees and will no longer be enrolled as undergraduates during the program dates are not eligible to participate.


General information about the program 

Are summer researchers paid?
Yes, students will receive a stipend meant to cover the cost of meals, travel and other related expenses.

May I register for classes or work part-time during the program?
Because this is a full-time program, students are discouraged from working an additional part-time position, or taking classes. If you feel you need to get a second job or take a class, talk to your faculty advisor.

Can I change projects at any time during the onboarding or summer?
No; the funding used to cover your stipend only covers the specific project you join. All work done during your time with us must be related to the project you are invited to work on.

What transportation options are available once we arrive in Pittsburgh?
Non-CMU students will receive a Pittsburgh Regional Transit pass which will allow you to access the Pittsburgh bus system to travel around the city. CMU also has a free shuttle service you are able to take advantage of by showing the shuttle driver your CMU ID upon boarding.

What housing options are available?
Accepted students receive additional documentation regarding housing with their offer letter. 

Is there a dress code I need to follow?
We are pretty casual here at HCII. It’s not unusual to see people in jeans or shorts and t-shirts over the summer. We do recommend bringing at least one business casual outfit to wear at the end of summer poster session.

What should I bring on my first day?
Your first day will primarily consist of orientation. If you need anything in particular, you will get an email ahead of time to let you know.

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