About the Werner H. Kirsten Student Intern Program (WHK SIP)

About the Program

Students must attend a school within the Frederick, Carroll or Washington County Public School Systems; Saint John’s Catholic Prep (Frederick, MD); Frederick Christian Academy (Frederick, MD); Poolesville High School (Montgomery County, MD); Fairfield High School (Fairfield, PA) or Jefferson County Public School System (West Virginia). Students home schooled in the schools or counties participating in the WHK SIP are eligible also.

Scientific interns work full-time (40 hours per week) for eight consecutive weeks during the summer (training period) and receive a stipend of approximately $3,400.

All interns work three hours per day during the school day for the entire school year as a student volunteer (no stipend) and receive credit towards their diploma.

To be eligible for the WHK SIP, a student must be at least 16 years of age and a junior in high school (when applying), have an overall unweighted grade point average of 3.0 or 2.5*, be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, have health insurance, and more (see program information for additional eligibility requirements).

Dr. Werner H. Kirsten

Dr. Werner H. KirstenDr. Werner H. Kirsten served as Associate Director of the National Cancer Institute at Frederick (NCI-Frederick (formerly the NCI-FCRDC)) for four years until his sudden death in December 1992. Prior to joining the NCI, Dr. Kirsten was Chairman of the Department of Pathology at the University of Chicago Medical Center.

Dr. Kirsten is best known for his discovery of one of the first known cancer-causing viruses, the Kirsten sarcoma virus, while at the University of Chicago. Research on cancer-causing viruses, including the Kirsten virus, led to the discovery of human genes that play a role in causing cancer. In addition to his research at the University of Chicago and his leadership at the NCI-Frederick, Dr. Kirsten also served an as officer of the Association of Pathology and the Leukemia Society of America.

* GPA of 2.5 requires a third teacher recommendation.