This summer the Myers Center, in collaboration with the Center for Ethnographic Research (CER) at the University of California at Berkeley, is offering an intensive research internship program for undergraduate and graduate students. The Myers Center is reserving two free spots in this internship program for highly motivated undergraduates or beginning graduate students who are conducting research on issues affecting Native American communities today.
Description of the program:
The program runs from June 23 through July 31, 2014. Meetings will be held on Mondays and Thursdays from 1-4pm.
The CER Internship Program will provide mentorship, hands-on research experience, and advanced training in designing and executing a project using qualitative methods to program participants. Students will receive six weeks of intensive accelerated methodological training in the design and practice of qualitative methods in weekly seminars taught by CER visiting scholars and graduate fellows. (http://cer.berkeley.edu). The topics in the seminars include the following:
- The logic and practice of qualitative research design
- Participant observation
- In-depth interviewing
- Practical computer assisted qualitative data analysis in ATLAS.ti
In addition to weekly seminars, each CER intern is assigned a research mentor. Mentors provide feedback on research project development and design. Mentors also offer supplemental information sessions on the graduate school experience and preparing an application for graduate school.
The CER Internship Program expects students to develop and sustain an empirical research project for an honors thesis, advanced methods class, scholarly article, or conference presentation. In this process, students develop hands-on research and logistical experience and receive structure and guidance in the development of an independent and original project.
How to apply:
Complete the online application here. Be sure to follow the directions on that page about emailing a copy of your transcript.
The deadline for receiving applications is April 1, 2014. Applicants will be notified by April 15.
What does the program cost?
Two student applicants will be selected by the Myers Center to participate in the program. The Myers Center will cover the cost of these students’ participation in the program ($1200/each). (Room and board is not included.) Selection will be based on an assessment of the student’s academic record and proposed project. (UC Berkeley students will be given priority.) (Students who are not engaged in research on issues affecting Native American communities may still apply for the program and, if selected, pay the program cost of $1200/each. For more information, go to http://cer.berkeley.edu.)
Who is eligible?
Advanced undergraduate students (rising juniors and seniors), students who have just graduated, and beginning graduate students from any college or university.
Does the program provide housing?
Unfortunately the center does not provide housing options. Options listed through the University are also available here: http://summer.berkeley.edu/student-services/student-housing. Summer sublets of students away for the summer are plentiful through Craigslist.com.
What is expected of students?
Students must attend all seminars (approximately six hours each week) and complete all assigned readings and research projects (approximately 15+ hours each week). Students must develop or continue an empirical research project that uses qualitative methods and concerns issues affecting Native American communities today.
May I receive course credit for this internship?
The Center for Ethnographic Research is not a university department that can provide credit for successful completion of the course. However, some universities will award students credit for participating in the internship. Please check with your university and home department.
What can students gain from this internship program?
Students will obtain advanced knowledge and training in observational and interview research methods. These skills will assist with undergraduate honors thesis, graduate school research projects, and research jobs both in and outside of academia.
CER also provides extensive training in qualitative research analysis using ATLAS.ti, which can provide a competitive advantage for research jobs and graduate school.
The internship is run much like a graduate school course and is designed to give students a preview of the graduate school experience. Additionally, the internship offers a workshop covering each section of the graduate school application process including a review of personal statements. We will also cover such topics as where to apply to graduate schools, how to decide between schools once you have been accepted, and how to find research funding.
What do students do with their CER training?
CER interns have entered graduate programs in the social sciences and policy at Harvard, UC Berkeley, University of Wisconsin-Madison, New York University, UCLA, University of Michigan, and Northwestern University. Others have used their training to enter academic and community-based research positions and to work as activists in local and international contexts.
What do graduates say about the CER Internship training?
“The CUE Internship gave a community of inquisitive and exceptional undergraduates the opportunity to continue thinking critically about interview and ethnographic methods. I felt lucky to be among those undergraduates. Given that the internship provided a deeper engagement with qualitative methods in six weeks than other classes offer in an entire semester, I would recommend the program to any undergraduate serious about research in the social sciences.”
“Over the course of the month, I had the opportunity to develop the idea of my research project much more extensively than I would have otherwise been able to .”
“It was great to meet all of the mentors, who I felt were always very open and available for asking questions and seeking any other kind of help. I felt that I was also a good opportunity to meet other senior undergraduates doing a thesis or similar project before the school year started. It motivated me to think through my research more and network as necessary to get prepared.”
“I appreciated the warm atmosphere and the general respect given to the undergraduates. The graduate fellows did not belittle the undergraduates, and instead treated the undergraduates as equals. I was surprised at how professional and encouraging the workshop proved to be.”
“The best part of the workshop, however, was the mentors. Being able to bounce ideas off of someone with lots of research experience and knowledge made generating manageable yet interesting projects a lot easier.”
“I could not imagine a more brilliant, compassionate, and inspirational mentor! My mentor’s deft understanding of qualitative (and quantitative) methods and mentorship skills were extraordinary. And by extraordinary, I mean that his virtuosic ability to answer difficult questions and address weighty concerns about my honors thesis exceeded expectation. My mentor motivated me to see the merits of my honors thesis while also encouraging me to make my research question and methodological choices more rigorous and reasonable. I have a feeling that I will always be indebted to my mentor for his considerable help this summer.”
“I thought that the lecture on qualitative interviewing was especially helpful, as I had just done a day of interviews for my project. I feel that I have a much better grasp on how to go about collecting qualitative data. I know that the information given will be extremely valuable when I begin conducting my study this year.”