Summer Research Program

Summer Research Program applications are now closed. 

Applications for the summer program will open on this page in the future. In the meantime, explore our graduate programs.

If you are interested in PhD studies in engineering, computer science, and statistics and curious enough to come to the Washington D.C. area, our summer research program may be for you.

Cherry Blossoms

Mason Engineering graduate students will find a community, study and research resources, and fun opportunities to fill downtime on the Fairfax campus.

We're recruiting top undergraduates and master's students to conduct research with us from July 6 to July 24, 2020. It's a chance for you to get to know us, for us to get to know you, and to collaborate on a real research project that might turn into something more both here and at your current university. 

You will live in the George Mason University dorms in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., working on faculty-led research solving real problems during the week. On the weekends, you can tour the nation's capital, check out the city's entertainment scene in Georgetown or Adams Morgan, go to a Washington Nationals major league baseball game, or ride the bus to New York City.

"During my stay at Mason for [the] 3DR summer program, I developed strong ties with the faculty and PhD advisor… that's why I decided to join the Volgenau School of Engineering. The faculty members at VSE are amazing both from [a] technical point of view and assisting students in their research.

…[I]f you are looking to nurture your abilities and sharpen your skills then [the] 3DR program would introduce potential students to some of the latest technology and research being conducted."

Saad U., PhD Civil and Infrastructure Engineering '18 George Mason University

Summer 2020 Research Topics



(BIOE1) Precision delivery of vaccines 

(WE'RE SORRY. THIS RESEARCH PROJECT IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE FOR APPLICATIONS RECEIVED MARCH 2ND AND ONWARD TO CHOOSE FROM. PLEASE SELECT FROM THE PROJECTS LISTED BELOW) Messenger RNA (mRNA) is one of the newest frontiers in the creation of vaccines and antibodies to prevent and treat a wide range of diseases. This research engineers ionizable lipid-based nanoparticies to deliver mRNA to the right target cells in the body.

Preferred academic background:

biomedical engineering, chemistry, physics, biology

(BIOE2) Restoring capabilities to people with missing limbs 

This research develops next generation prosthetics and exoskeletons for people with missing limbs and mobility difficulty. Students work at the intersection of neuroscience, medical imaging and biomedical engineering. 

Preferred academic background:

MATLAB, prior laboratory experience

(BIOE3) Defeating arthritis

Arthritis disables many people and especially older adults. This research uses ultrasound imaging to understand the roles of mechanical and enzymatic catabolic stress on arthritic joints, to explore ways to regenerate bones and cartilage.

Preferred academic background:

MATLAB, programming, 3D image analysis, histology, tissue culture

(BIOE4) Creating tools for personalized medicine

Personalized medicine allows us to tailor treatment for disease to each person's unique characteristics. It also requires far deeper understanding of the disease. This research uses polymers introduced into the blood to reveal details of infection and inflammation.

Preferred academic background:

molecular cell biology, aseptic technique, immunology



(COMP1) Instructable cognitive agents for cybersecurity

Research a computational theory of evidence-based reasoning for instructable cognitive agents, enabling everyone to be a programmer by teaching the agents to perform evidence-based reasoning tasks, such as computer intrusion detection or medical diagnosis, rather than programming them. Apply the theory to develop instructable agents for the autonomous detection of novel computer intrusions.

Preferred academic background:

cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, JAVA

(COMP2) Preventing cascading failures in complex IT systems

Any complex IT system - for example, electronic banking - depends on many IT components. As a result, a cyberattack that disrupts one component, can lead to a cascading failure of the complete system. This research leverages graph theory and network traffic analysis to discover such dependencies and engineer countermeasures to prevent cascading failures.

Preferred academic background:

cybersecurity, math, coding (Java preferred)