Student Research Training Programs

Research is an integral part of any professional career. Research conducted by veterinarians is necessary to advance the science of diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. In addition, veterinary research would impact wildlife health and conservation, humane treatment of animals, protection of the nation's food supply, and control of zoonotic disease.

The Cummings School encourages and provides a variety of opportunities for DVM students to do research in the clinics, laboratories, or in the field.

Cummings School/MIT Summer Research Program

Summer Research Training Program

The Student Summer Research Program at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine provides veterinary students with an opportunity to perform mentored research over the summer months within the context of a structured educational framework, thereby introducing them to career options based in biomedical science.


  • First- and second-year veterinary students in good academic standing are eligible to participate in the program.
  • Activities include training in responsible conduct of research, formulating a hypothesis/experimental plan, ensuring rigor and reproducibility of data, and critical review of the literature.
  • Opportunities will be available to participate in organized field trips to visit unique facilities including the New England Regional Biocontainment Laboratory, the Division of Comparative Medicine at MIT, biomedical research entities, and contract research organizations.
  • Students are required to participate in the weekly Summer Research Seminar Series featuring veterinarians actively engaged in biomedical research across academic centers and the biotechnology sector.
  • Following program completion, students will submit a final written report summarizing their findings and contribute to manuscript preparation and editing with their mentors.
  • All students participate in the Annual Research Day at Cummings School where they showcase their research findings through poster presentations.

  • Success of the program depends on active participation by mentors in all phases of the training process. A mentor is likely to provide the best possible training if the student is involved in mentor's area of active research. With these in mind, the following guidelines are recommended.

    1. A mentor should provide supervision during all phases of the proposed study including:
      • project design
      • submission of relevant funding applications (i.e, MAF)
      • obtaining necessary approvals
      • data generation/conduct of experiments
      • data analysis
      • preparation of the written report
      • poster/oral presentation at NVSS (if relevant)
      • poster presentation at Research Day
    2. To optimize/maximize student-mentor interactions during the training period a maximum of two students can be sponsored by a single mentor each summer.
    3. The mentor should support projects that fall within their area of active areas of research. If a proposed project requires additional expertise, a co-mentor should be sought out to ensure that adequate project input is provided.
    4. With few exceptions, the program does not provide funds for supplies needed to conduct the research project. Thus, the mentor should ensure availability of all necessary resources.
    5. Mentors should encourage their students to present findings at a national scientific meeting. The program will try to provide some limited funds to cover registration fees for such meetings.
    6. If work completed by the student is published, please acknowledge how the student was supported and send notification of the publication to the Program Director.
    7. Mentors must assist students with poster preparation and attend the Annual Research Day event to support their trainees.
  • Infectious Disease and Global Health

    Comparative pathology
    Conservation medicine
    Cryptosporidium parvum
    Global Health
    International Veterinary Medicine
    Lyme disease
    Microbiome in health and disease
    Mycobacterium tuberculosis
    Therapeutic biomolecules
    Wildlife medicine
    Zoonotic disease

    Department of Comparative Pathobiology

    Assay Development/Animal Models/Rickettsiosis
    Reproductive health/contraception
    Transgenerational opioid effects/epigenetics

    Department of Clinical Sciences

    Animal Behavior
    Antimicrobial Stewardship
    Cardiovascular disease
    Comparative and Translational Oncology
    Diagnostic Imaging
    Emergency Medicine/Trauma
    Equine Medicine (asthma/airway disease, endocrine)
    Equine orthopedics/sports medicine
    Human-Animal Interaction
    Liver Disease
    Pain Medicine
    Respiratory Disease
    Shelter Medicine
    Small animal orthopedics
    Soft Tissue Surgery
    Zoological/Exotic Companion Medicine

    Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    Infectious disease / virology / HIV pathogenesis
    Immunology / platelet immunology
    Bacteriology / Microbiome / Helicobacter
    Anesthesia & Analgesia
    Animal model refinement
    Neuroscience / Cognition
    Cancer biology

  • See a listing of the mentors and projects here.

    1. Each awardee will receive approximately $6,792 over the summer, divided up into 3 equal payments. This stipend may be supplemented by other sources if the awarding agency does not provide the full amount. Students will receive payments at the beginning of June, July, and August.
    2. Awardees are required to work full time and participate in required research related activities (journal club, seminars, etc.) and scheduled seminars/field trips.
    3. Each awardee will be required to submit one copy of a written report plus an electronic copy to<> that summarizes their research findings. The written report should conform to the styles of a scientific journal of choice and be constructed in partnership with their mentor.  This report is due November 22nd.
    4. Awardees funded by the NIH, Boehringer and FFAR will be required to present a poster at the NVSS/AAVMC Conference August 8-10, 2024.  The conference will be held in St. Paul, Minnesota.
    5. All awardees will be required to present their work at Research Day scheduled tentatively for September 6, 2024 on Grafton Campus.
    6. The Research Day program includes poster presentations by DVM students, graduate students and house officers/residents.  Participants will provide a 5-minute overview of their work in front of their poster to a select panel of judges, with 5 minutes allotted for questions.  Awards for best poster presentation will be given in the following categories for DVM students in the summer program:  Basic Research, Clinical Research, International/Conservation Medicine.  Awards will also be given for best poster presentation in the Graduate Student and House Officer/Resident categories.
  • For further information, or to submit program documents, please contact the program directors at

    Dr. Cheryl London, DVM, PhD, DACVIM (Oncology)
    Research Professor
    Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education
    Anne Engen and Dusty Professorship in Comparative Oncology
    Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University
    200 Westboro Road
    North Grafton, MA 01534

    Trena Haroutunian
    Administrative Coordinator
    Department of Research
    Office of Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Education
    Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University
    200 Westboro Road
    North Grafton, MA 01536

2023 Summer Research Projects