Frequently Asked Questions about the HCII Summer Research Program

Applying to the program and notifications:

When can I apply to the Summer 2021 program?

The application will be available in mid-November 2020. An exact date will be announced once it is determined. 

I applied to the program back in November and I have not heard back. How and when will I be notified?

All applicants, regardless of whether or not they are receiving an offer, will be notified via email. Most will know by mid-March but due to the high volume of applicants it may take a little longer. Please be patient with us as we take the time to thoroughly review each application.

When is the application deadline for the Summer 2021 program?

Historically the deadline to apply is mid-January. An exact date will be determined once we know when the application will be available.

I see there is an option to upload a copy of my resume, transcripts and letters of recommendation. Do I have to include these?

While the supplementary materials are not required, they are strongly encouraged.

I submitted my application, but need to update it. How do I go about updating my application?

Once you submit your application, you receive a copy of your responses via email. In this email is a link to update your responses, which is available until the application deadline.

I applied last year and was accepted into the program, but had to decline. Do I need to reapply?

Yes, you must reapply to be considered.

Can I submit additional materials to strengthen my application?

Yes. If you would like to submit additional materials, please email them to hcii-reu [at] andrew.cmu.edu and provide the name on your application.

Can I still apply if I am graduating or am an international student?

Yes. The majority of our funding does come from the National Science Foundation which requires recipients to be undergraduate students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents, but we do have other funding available for those who do not meet NSF’s criteria. It is also important to note that this program is geared towards undergraduate juniors.

 

General information about the program: 

How are students paid?

Students are hired as full-time Research Staff. This means you will be paid in the form of a bi-weekly paycheck which is taxed. This also means your first paycheck will likely be a few weeks after you start, so please plan accordingly.

You mentioned those hired are hired as full-time staff, does this mean I qualify for benefits?

Yes! More information on CMU’s benefits can be found here: https://www.cmu.edu/jobs/benefits-at-a-glance/.

I have a question regarding the taxes being taken from my paycheck, who can I talk to about that?

Anything relating to taxes, pay, benefits, or something similar should be directed to cmu-works [at] andrew.cmu.edu.

May I register for classes or work part time during the program?

This is an intense, full-time program. Students are strongly discouraged from working an additional part-time position, or taking classes. If you feel you absolutely need to get a second job or take a class, talk to your faculty advisor.

What housing options are available?

Accepted students receive additional documentation regarding housing with their offer letter. There are sometimes a few apartments available on campus, but they require full payment at the time of registration. On campus housing typically runs between $4,400-6,100, depending on single or double occupancy, and this payment is due when you register for housing around mid-March through mid-April.

We advise checking some of the options below, which are typically much more affordable. (We recommend looking in Shadyside, Squirrel Hill and Oakland as these are the closest to campus. We also advertise sublets from some of our current students, this information is usually available in March/April.)

Is there a dress code I need to follow?

We are pretty casual here at HCII. It’s not unusual to see people in jeans/shorts and t-shirts. We do recommend bringing at least one business casual outfit to wear at the end of summer poster session.

What should I bring on my first day?

Your first day will primarily consist of orientation, which includes a trip to our university’s work service center to complete your onboarding, and picking up your new staff ID’s (be prepared to get your photo taken). It is very important you bring appropriate identification documentation. More information, along with the list of acceptable documents, can be found on this CMU HR Service Center web page. Please note these must be the originals, copies are not accepted.

 

Have another question we haven’t addressed? Email us at  hcii-reu [at] andrew.cmu.edu.