Summer Student Programs

Summer Student Program Update #2

April 15, 2020

As the Lab remains in Reduced Mission-Critical Operations until further notice, most employees continue to work from home, and operate under protective measures—to self-isolate, practice social distancing, reduce travel, and telecommute when possible.

After careful consideration to maintain the safety of our staff and students during these uncertain next few months, we have determined that we will not host a summer student program onsite this summer. Instead, we will offer a remote summer program allowing students the opportunity to carry out a research project by telecommuting from their current location, if their original project can be modified for online work. Students will remote onto a server using their personal laptops.

It will not be possible to modify all student projects for meaningful remote online summer engagement, and internships that have an onsite requirement will be cancelled. As a result, our summer program is expected to operate at about 50% of the normal size.

Over the next week, we will communicate the status of their summer employment to students. Staff mentors have been modifying projects and delaying start dates where appropriate. Individual communications to students will be forthcoming in the next weeks.

It is our intention to provide a summer experience that is as engaging as possible given the challenges with the coronavirus pandemic, and we are working to be able to provide lectures, virtual tours, and other programs for our remote students. We recognize that this path forward will leave some disappointed, and we regret the impact this will have on our students and our summer student program. While we hope many students will join us remotely, a student’s decision not to participate in a remote learning program will not be a factor in any future employment.

Pat Falcone
Deputy Director for Science and Technology




Summer Student Program Update #1

March 27, 2020

In light of the uncertainties surrounding the current COVID-19 pandemic, we are temporarily suspending the processing of student hires while we consider if and how we will be able to conduct our student programs in the upcoming summer months.  For all students—those who have received an offer, for returning summer students, and for new students— we are continuing to assess the pandemic situation and expect to make a final decision about our summer student programs by April 15th at the latest.

We highly value our students as an integral part of our workforce and our summer community, and concern for their health and well-being, as well as that of our staff and community, is paramount.  We will proceed deliberately, recognizing the importance of operating under protective measures currently in effect to self-isolate, practice social distancing, reduce travel, and telecommute where possible.

We are currently evaluating options for continuing our summer programs that may include remotely accessible research projects and lecture series, postponing start dates (June or later), and other options depending on individual situations.

We will be working over the next few weeks together with the student mentors to develop specific guidance on the path forward for each student and summer program.  In the interim, if you have time sensitive questions, please feel free to contact Christine Zachow at

We recognize that this uncertainty may be an added source of stress during this challenging time, and we ask for your patience as we try to develop a responsible plan as quickly as possible for meaningful summer engagement for our students.  We also understand for those who have received an offer of employment for the summer, if your personal circumstances have changed and you are no longer able to commit to summer employment, please let us know. You can let us know at any time, and your decision will not result in bias or prejudice for future employment.

Pat Falcone
Deputy Director for Science and Technology