Welcoming SCONCs of all stripes


We encourage STEM majors and professional science communicators to join forces in the SCONC-HBCU Summer SciComm Internship. Students majoring in STEM Fields at North Carolina HBCUs are paired with professional science communicators across the Research Triangle Region for ten weeks of paid internship, offering hands-on experiential learning.


Interns might work on a video about a science topic, post social media updates for a public health effort, do research for a slide deck about a new drug or write a magazine style profile of a working scientist. You’ll also receive additional training as a group in taking better photos, making videos and supervising social media for an institution, and then have the chance to meet some working science communicators and ask them about their careers.



Each sponsoring organization coaches and mentors a promising young person and supports them for ten weeks at 20 hours a week at $17/hour (That’s $3,400 plus taxes and fringe). SCONC and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund will also provide each student with living expense stipends in June and July that make their total compensation for the experience $7,000.


You can afford to do this!




In two previous summers, we have shown 16 students what science communications jobs are like. We provide an introductory ‘boot camp’ session and several ‘lunch and learn’ sessions about various aspects of communication careers.

“I’ve been learning so much about environmental science and more about science communications. I really enjoy the fact that we get to do a lot of hands-on activities.” – KD, Summer of 2023


This experience has broadened the horizons of both students and sponsors and opened a new career path that many students didn’t even know existed.

“I really believe this past summer has changed the trajectory of my career” – TCG, Summer of 2023


Even when students don’t end up changing their goals, this experience and training will surely make them better scientists and doctors.





  • January: Our selection process begins, with each sponsor completing a one-paragraph job description for interested students to review.
  • February: Each interested student chooses three opportunities they’d like to interview for.
  • Early March: Sponsors and students meet on Zoom for half-hour interviews, then both groups rank-order their choices and we match everyone as highly as we can.
  • Late May/early June: Interns begin working





SPONSORS – Please ask for an example of last year’s job descriptions and have your appealing pitch ready by January 10, 2024.

STUDENTS – Please shine up your resume and assemble some writing samples for us to review (essays, school newspaper, blog posts, college admission essays – anything that shows your writing flair).

Then, please send an email to Karl Bates if you’re interested in participating or have any other questions about the program.



Photo of a small group of student interns and communications professionals smiling on Duke University's campus

Or stay connected as a Friend by signing up for our listserv and quarterly newsletter