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Learn how to make a difference - make this summer count!

UMBC Interdisciplinary CoLab: Narrative-based Paid Internship

CoLab is a 4-week paid summer narrative-based research internship for undergraduate UMBC students. Participants will create an effective narrative about UMBC’s campus, communities, and lives with an interdisciplinary team of students. Open to all majors, this is an excellent opportunity for students in STEM fields to learn to tell effective stories and for students in social science and humanities fields to gain research and technical skills.

Participants receive a $3000 stipend and a scholarship for a 3-credit internship course. The internship commitment is 30 hours per week during Summer Session One. Summer housing is available in on-campus residence halls and apartments.

Summer 2019 Projects

Want to see more CoLab? Have a look at what past students accomplished during their internships! See Past Projects
1) Neighborhood: A State of Mind – The East Baltimore Documentary Photography Project

The interdisciplinary team of researchers will examine the UMBC’s Special Collections’ vast holdings of photography, focusing specifically on materials related to the 1975- 1976 East Baltimore Documentary Photography Project. The team will explore various themes including identity, community, and urban transformation. Based on this research, students will produce a website, present an online exhibition of selected works from the collection, along with four to six original short research essays.

Project-specific interests and skills
Intellectual curiosity and strong written and oral communication skills are required of each team member. Website design knowledge, and familiarity with ArcGIS or other interactive mapping software are preferable. Students will be trained to use Omeka, which is an online platform for library special collections.

2) Baltimore, the Second Ellis Island: Making Baltimore’s Nineteenth to early Twentieth Century Immigration History Come Alive

The interdisciplinary team of researchers will work closely with the Baltimore Immigration Museum to develop educational materials to help promote the Museum’s mission of sharing Baltimore’s immigration history. Through archival research and interviews, the team will develop a video on the general history/documentation of Baltimore’s immigration history during the “Great Wave of Immigration” from 1830 to 1914. The team will also update the Museum’s website and create a promotional brochure.

Project-specific interests and skills
An interest in the history of immigration into the U.S. and Baltimore's role in it and strong reading and writing skills are required of each team member. Some experience in archival or other research skills, museum education, interviewing techniques, and/or media production, desktop publishing, and website creation skills are preferable.

3) Stories on a Sphere: Climate change in the marine ecosystem of the Arctic

The interdisciplinary team will examine earth science research about the impacts of climate change on the marine ecosystem across the Arctic. The team will produce a digital story designed for spherical screen platforms. Students will use expedition video and multimedia, scientific publications, GIS, and remote sensing data to select and assemble spherical maps, video, and animations for the display. A how-to document to help earth science researchers learn to use these innovative storytelling formats will also be produced. Participants will practice their pilot presentation at the Goddard NASA Visitor Center at the end of the summer session.

Project-specific interests and skills
Fascination with the earth sciences, creativity, and interest in creating stories about climate change are required of each team member. Some experience in audio-video, GIS, Magic Planet, script writing, graphic arts, animation, coding, or digital story-telling for middle school and high school students are preferable.

Application requirements
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Please contact Rachel Carter at

The UMBC Interdisciplinary CoLab program is a partnership between Summer/Winter Programs, the Dresher Center for the Humanities, and the Provost’s Interdisciplinary Activities Advisory Committee.