5 Interview Tips for Getting an Internship in a Research Lab!

interviewSo you’ve landed the science job of your dreams…well at least an interview for an internship in a research lab that has an opening…now don’t blow it! Here are our five top tips for making the best impression!

  1. Avoid pointing out that the whole place has a weird background hum. Most science labs have some sort of a mechanical background hum kind of like on the Enterprise TNG. If there is no hum, it’s a lab with no fun equipment. Just embrace it, it’ll be like working on the Enterprise, hmmmmmmmmm . . . hmmmmmmmmm . . . hmmmmmmmmm . . . .
  2. Ignore the weird smell. Most laboratories have some sorts of unusual smells that occasionally come and go. Don’t worry it’s not your potential coworkers but depending on the kind of lab, it could be a deal breaker for you. One lab we know cracks open a tiny bottle of 2-mercaptoethanol on interview days just to see if you will complain.
  3. Don’t laugh at things that aren’t funny. Scientists are less stupid than you think and definitely consider themselves clever, vis a vis, “knowing from funny”. Clearly they are experimentally taunting you with lame humor, don’t take the bait!
  4. Don’t accept any offers of food or drink during the interview. Again they are baiting you but this time they are trying to determine, empirically, if you are an idiot. Who would eat stuff lying around in a laboratory?
  5. Agree to whatever project they want you to start on. I mean, you’re going to be working in a freaking science lab! If you are any good, they’ll figure it out and you’ll have your own projects soon enough.



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