The Maryland Summer Scholars Program (MSS) provides opportunities for University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) undergraduates to spend much of the summer working closely with faculty mentors on ambitious research, scholarly, or artistic projects. The MSS program provides awards of $3,000 to approximately 25-30 outstanding undergraduates each summer.
Many Summer Scholars expand their summer research into an independent study or honors thesis project the following autumn semester, and find that their research experience helps distinguish their applications for graduate study, fellowships, internships, employment and other competitive opportunities.
Maryland Summer Scholars (MSS) may conduct their summer research on the College Park campus or elsewhere in the U.S. or abroad as required by the nature of the project. Students whose projects require travel for an extended period of time to off campus locations (not to include regular commuting) may submit a travel supplement request as directed in the online application form.
Please watch this recorded presentation for more information about MSS.
To be eligible to apply for an MSS award students must:
- Have earned 12 or more UMD course credits (not including AP or IB credits) by the date of the application deadline;
- Have a cumulative UMD GPA of 3.40 or higher by the date of the application deadline; and
- Expect to receive their undergraduate degree no earlier than December 2021.
The deadline for applying for Summer 2021 Maryland Summer Scholars awards is 11:59 pm, Sunday, February 14th, 2021.
- A completed and submitted online application form (see "apply now" link in box to the right).
- A student-written summer research proposal (see "advice for project proposal" link in the box to the right) uploaded to the application. Additionally, students may submit an optional but strongly recommended 1-page maximum supplementary statement of plans indicating how the student's proposed summer research project will be modified if necessary to accommodate possible Covid-related restrictions on in-person or in-lab research or travel. Students recieving MSS award offers will be required to submit this supplementary statement of plans to adapt their research.
- A letter of recommendation from a UMD faculty member addressing the merit of the proposed summer research and the student's qualification to undertake that project, and a brief description of their plans for providing suitable mentoring/advising for the project. Please note: If an appropriate UMD expert does not have a faculty appointment, but has a position of comparable expertise/responsibility at the University, that is acceptable. Please see the FAQ page if you are certain that an appropriate expert cannot be found at the University of Maryland.
- A second letter of recommendation which may be from a secondary mentor/advisor for the summer research project or a general academic reference addressing the student¹s academic abilities and potential. Both recommendation letters should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- An unofficial University of Maryland transcript including any coursework/grades from the fall semester preceding the date of the application deadline. The transcript should be uploaded to the application.
Final Reporting Requirements:
Summer Scholars will be required to:
- Complete a concise research report, or submit a specified alternative final product of their research;
- Present a poster describing their work at Undergraduate Research Day in the Spring following their Summer award. Undergraduate Research Day usually takes place on the last Wednesday in April in the Stamp Student Union. Students who will have graduated in December are exempt from presenting at Undergraduate Research Day.
Important Tax Information:
Please note that MSS awards are subject to taxation as personal income, and awardees should plan accordingly; tax withholding may apply.
**As of January, 2018, MSS is using a new platform for applications. This platform allows students to upload their project proposals and transcripts directly to the application rather than emailing them as separate documents. Additionally, some ad and data-collection blockers can interfere with the new MSS application. If you find that the MSS application is not loading on your computer, please disable all blockers and try again.
**Students are encouraged to apply for any sources of funding that can assist in supporting their summer research plans. However, for students accepting MSS awards, the MSS award should constitute the sole UMD-related source of funding for their proposed MSS research. Students will be free to decline MSS awards in favor of alternate funding, if that is preferable. MSS awardees should notify MCUR promptly if they expect to receive support specifically for their summer research from additional sources. MSS awards may only be used to support the research proposed in the MSS application. MSS awards may not be used to provide supplementary support for students admitted to NSF REU, NIST SURF, or similar summer research programs that provide funding to participants.