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Summer Training in Academic Research

COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate: Children’s Mercy requires all employees, including clinical and non-clinical staff, contract and remote workers, students, non-employed residents, fellows, interns, and volunteers, to have received both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, by December 15, 2021, or obtain a medical or religious accommodation that has been approved by CM.

The Summer Training in Academic Research (STAR) 2.0 Program provides a hands-on, high-quality research experience during the summer academic break for high school students and educators.

During the program, participants get the chance to:

  • Work with Children’s Mercy faculty on an original research project.
  • Develop a research publication for submission in a peer-reviewed journal.
  • Learn about clinical and translational research methodology, writing, statistics, medical ethics, and career development.
  • Network and learn with other students/educators from across the country.

Who can apply

We are seeking for participation in the program, high school students who identify from racial and ethnic groups which are currently under-represented in medicine and science (American Indian/native Alaskan, Black, or African American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian/Pacific islander, underrepresented Asian populations (e.g., Vietnamese, Cambodian, Indonesian).

No background in scientific research is necessary, but solid academic performance and an interest in medicine and/or science is preferred.  We will further consider preference for students who are from disadvantaged backgrounds, in addition to giving preference to students who attend public or charter schools in the urban metropolitan Kansas City school districts.

When and where

The program meets over six weeks during the summer break period starting on June 20 to July 28, 2022, and convenes daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. All students in the program must commit to full participation during the entire period.

The program is held at the Children’s Mercy Research Institute (CMRI) on the Children’s Mercy campus at 2401 Gillham Road, Kansas City, Missouri. The CMRI fosters an integrated research environment where no boundaries exist between science and medicine, uniting physicians, scientists, academic colleagues, and partners in the pursuit of discoveries to improve the health and well-being of children everywhere.

Why you should apply

The STAR 2.0 Program gives participants:

  • An inside perspective of the world of science and medicine.
  • Hands-on experience in research that will improve the care of real patients.
  • A better understanding of what it is like to work in medical research.
  • Contacts in the local medical research community.
  • The opportunity to get their work published in peer-reviewed journals, a critical step that establishes them in the scientific community and allows them to be competitive for other opportunities.
  • PLUS, the program provides a stipend ($2,600) to attend, which allows students to participate who were planning to work over the summer break.

How to apply

How to apply for students


Student applications will be accepted through Dec. 17, 2021.

The online application requires you to complete the following:

  • Provide your personal profile information.
  • Identify names and contact info for two non-related references.
  • Uploading of your school transcript.
  • Essay (limit 2 pages) addressing the question: “What does medicine and research mean to you?”


How to apply for teachers

Teacher applications will be accepted through Feb. 24, 2022.

A public service announcement recorded by STAR 2.0 students.

Contact us

Email for more information.

Bridgette Jones, MD, MSCR
Medical Director, STAR 2.0 Program
Associate Professor of Pediatrics

Vickie Yarbrough, MA, BA
Program Director, STAR 2.0 Program