The Summer Research Initiative (SRI) was created in 1999 by the Office of the Dean in the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences (BSOS) and is supported by the Office of the Provost, the Graduate School, the Office of the Vice President for Research and the College. The program is designed to encourage and enhance the diversity of scholars working in the social and behavioral science fields.

In that spirit, we are interested in receiving applications to the program from a broad spectrum of students, including African Americans, Latino/Hispanics, American Indian/Alaskan Natives, Native Hawaiians or other Pacific Islanders, as well as students with research interests related to diverse communities.

The goals of the SRI are to:

  • Increase the knowledge of, and interest in, doctoral-level training in the social, behavioral, and economic sciences;
  • Provide rising juniors and seniors an opportunity to learn about graduate studies and the range of research and scholarship in the social, behavioral and economic sciences at the University of Maryland;
  • Provide a laboratory experience that enhances basic research knowledge and skills;
  • Provide lectures, workshops, didactic exchanges, and other programming to enhance students' knowledge of the graduate application process, negotiating the academic rigors and professional and personal challenges encountered in graduate school, and developing career paths in social, behavioral and economic sciences; and
  • Provide mentoring and networking opportunities for students to advance their training in the social, behavioral and economic sciences.

The SRI is part of the College's longstanding commitment to increasing the number of underrepresented minorities who pursue graduate degrees in the social, behavioral, and economic sciences. According to 2016 data from the magazine Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, the university ranks 12th in the country in the number of graduate and professional degrees awarded and 28th in the number of undergraduate degrees awarded to underrepresented minority students. The Summer Research Initiative is an integral part of our efforts.


Due to restrictions related to social distancing, interruptions in and concern over air travel, and most importantly, worldwide efforts to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we have decided to cancel the BSOS SSRI for the summer of 2020.

We deeply regret the lost opportunity for you to engage in an enriching summer of research here at Maryland, however, your health and the public’s health was our biggest concern when we made this decision. We look forward to continuing the program in the summer of 2021.

We encourage you to explore the various graduate programs here within the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences.  

Please direct any questions or concerns to bsossri [at] umd [dot] edu (). You can also contact the SRI coordinator Kimberly Johnson directly by emailing kjohns16@umd or calling 301-405-1097.