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FDA OCE Summer Scholars Program
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Just had a question about the FDA OCE Summer Scholars Program.

I am planning on doing this program over the summer. However, the internship is virtual due to COVID-19, so how would that affect my college application (like would the fact that it was virtual negatively effect the quality of it, would they regard it as lower)? Also, how helpful is this program for bs/md applications, since I am looking to go to one of those?

Stay safe!

Here's the link to the program page: https://www.fda.gov/about-fda/scientific-internships-fellowships-trainees-and-non-us-citizens/oce-summer-scholars-program

MedicalSchool
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BS-MD

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Hey @sanrad - first, congrats on getting accepted to the FDA OCE Summer Scholars Program! I agree with what @ema_o said about colleges being understanding about the summer program going virtual. You're actually pretty lucky because many programs and internships have been outright cancelled, leaving students to scramble and figure out what to do. I think your summer experience will still look great on applications.

After looking through the link you posted, it seems like an awesome program to get experience with clinical research and gain healthcare professional skills. For BSMD programs, this summer program definitely won't hurt you! I'm not sure what else you've done or are planning on doing in terms of medical-related ECs, but BSMD programs will look to see extensive demonstrated interest in the medical field because they want to know you're serious about pursuing the MD. So, if you can pair your virtual FDA program with some local experience shadowing doctors, volunteering, or working in a hospital/clinic, that would really help. Obviously, only do this if it is safe. If shadowing/volunteering isn't safe where you live right now, try looking for virtual opportunities or wait until next summer or school year to start in-person experiences!

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Colleges understand what's happening in the world right now, and, given that I've gone to many different colleges' information sessions, they have explained that it won't negatively affect you at all. Some find it beneficial even to show that you've partaken in an online club, internship, etc. during COVID-19.