Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation

SURGE Frequently Asked Questions

Main content start

Are international students eligible for the SURGE Program?

Since this is a NSF funded program, the primary audience are students who are US citizens or permanent residents. However, there is limited funding for international and DACA students. All students must be enrolled in a U.S. four-year college or university to be eligible.

Can high school students, community college students, college graduates, or graduate students participate in SURGE?

Students must be current undergraduates enrolled in an accredited U.S. two or four-year college or university to participate in SURGE. Preference is given to rising sophomores, juniors, or non-graduating seniors, and Community College students in their second/last year of community college and planning to transfer to a four year college after SURGE. Students who have been accepted into graduate programs are not eligible.

How are program placements made?

The online application (in SlideRoom) allows you to select departments you are most interested. Applicants can also select their top three projects proposed by potential mentors. Placements with specific faculty are not guaranteed. 

What summer projects are available?

See our list of potential projects. However, not all summer projects are listed or have been finalized.

How long will the program run?

Program dates are June 21st to August 17th, 2024. These dates are not flexible and students must participate for the entire 8 weeks.

How many students will participate in the SURGE Program?

There is no set number of participants. However, in the past, we have had cohorts ranging from 15 to 20 participants. 

Are students without previous research experience eligible?

Yes. We are especially seeking students who do not have prior research experience and who come from undergraduate institutions with limited research opportunities.

What does fully funded mean? 

SURGE will cover the cost of transportation to/from Stanford, housing, and meals. In addition, SURGE scholars will receive a $4800 stipend. 

When will application decisions be made?

The selection process begins in February and final decisions will be made by mid-March.

What should the letters of recommendation include?

In the application portal, you will be asked to provide the names and emails of two people you would like to write a letter of recommendation. They can be a faculty mentor, a course professor, or a professional mentor/manager. A strong letter of recommendation will include some examples or details to describe: a) Motivation and commitment, b) Learning mindset and general curiosity, c) Research or professional skills. Comments on the student's commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion are a plus, but not expected.

We recommend contacting your recommenders with enough time, explaining that you are interested in applying to a paid internship program (if possible, share a short description) and why you think this would be a good opportunity for you. If possible, share your resume or additional information about your skills, background, and interests that can help your recommender to write a strong letter.

I've submitted my application and now I want to make edits to my application?

You cannot edit a completed submission. The application portal SlideRoom states that applicants cannot change materials after they are submitted and you cannot see materials until they are submitted. However, the program manager can Unsubmit a submitted application before the deadline. Please send an email request to if you'd like to Unsubmit an application.

I am no longer interested in applying. How do I delete my application?

You are able to delete your application on your dashboard page which appears after you log-in to your SlideRoom account.

In which format can I upload my files?

Please upload your CV or resume and transcripts in a PDF format. We will not review files in any other formats.

How do I upload an official transcript?

You are required to upload an unofficial transcript. Upon acceptance to the program, official college transcripts may be required and can be sent by mail. We do not require high school transcripts.

How do I translate my GPA scale?

If you're looking for college admissions assistance with comparing your GPA, here is a common method for translating grades from one scale to another. However, consider that we do holistic admissions and a high GPA does not mean higher chances to get admitted. We are looking at students as a whole:

  • A+ = 4.0 = 97-100
  • A = 4.0 = 94-100
  • A– = 3.7 = 90-93
  • B+ = 3.3 = 87-89
  • B = 3.0 = 84-86
  • B– = 2.7 = 80-83
  • C+ = 2.3 = 77-79
  • C = 2.0 = 74-76
  • C– = 1.7 = 70-73
  • D+ = 1.3 = 67-69
  • D = 1.0 = 64-66
  • D– = 0.7 = 60-63
  • F = 0.0 = 0-59

How do I convert my school's 4.3 GPA system to the 4.0 GPA scale?

If you're looking to convert a 4.3 GPA scale to a 4.0 GPA scale, here's some information that might be useful. According to a 4.3 grade scale, the following numbers translate to the following letters:

  • A+ = 4.3 GPA
  • A = 4 GPA
  • A- = 3.7 GPA
  • B+ = 3.3 GPA
  • B = 3 GPA
  • B- = 2.7 GPA
  • C+ = 2.3 GPA
  • C = 2 GPA
  • C- = 1.7 GPA
  • D+ = 1.3 GPA
  • D = 1 GPA
  • D- = 0.7 GPA
  • F = 0 GPA

I have heard about SURGE through the Leadership Alliance. How do I apply?

If you would like to apply to SURGE through the Leadership Alliance, you must complete both the Leadership Alliance and SURGE applications.  LA application 

If you have any questions that are not listed above, please email us.