The internship and volunteer placement with the Autism Program at Boston Medical Center provides undergraduate and graduate level students the opportunity to participate in a rich applied hospital based placement supporting children and families. The program relies heavily on the support, creativity, and drive of student interns and volunteers in various capacities based on the program and individual student’s needs. The student intern or volunteer works with BMC Autism Program staff including the Program Director, Program Manager, Autism Resource Specialists, Autism Friendly Project Coordinator, and Research Coordinator (as well as clinicians and other interns/volunteer staff) in executing many aspects and components of our family support program, as identified in the project descriptions below. Interns and volunteers also have the opportunity to observe diagnostic and follow-up clinic appointments with Developmental and Behavioral Pediatric clinicians, as well as participate in a plethora of training opportunities.

For more information about the internship program, please contact us at [email protected] or 617.414.3842.

Applications

Please adhere to the application dates below, otherwise your application will be missed. 

  • For Fall placements, please submit your application between the previous April 1st-June 1st
  • For Spring placements, please submit your application between the previous September 1st-November 1st
  • For Summer placements, please submit your application between the previous January 1st-March 1st

To apply for a volunteering/internship position, please use this link: https://form.jotform.com/81025951317150 

For all other placements including inter-sessions or shorter term placements, or questions regarding the application process, please email [email protected].


Frequently Asked Questions

Please be advised, the Autism Program is disability inclusive and we value neurodiversity within our workplace and team. 

What does the interview process look like? 

Applications are reviewed 2-3 months prior to the start of the placement (March-Summer, May-Fall, and November-Spring). Once applications are reviewed, chosen candidates will be invited to participate in an individual or group interview as an opportunity to share relevant experience and skills, as well as ask questions. Anywhere from 3-10 interns/volunteers are on-boarded each placement cycle. 

Is the internship placement paid? 

No, unfortunately, our internships are unpaid and we are unable to provide a housing or transportation stipend.  

What is the difference between a “volunteer” and an “intern” with your program? 

The distinction between a “volunteer” and “intern” position with our program relates to your current academic status and will dictate how you are onboarded into the program. If you are going to be receiving academic credit for your time spent with our program, you will likely be onboarded as an intern. If you are not receiving academic credit, you will be onboarded as a volunteer or visiting personnel. Program staff will discuss these distinctions during the interview process. There is no difference in the type of projects or opportunities you may have access to because of this distinction. Please note that our program often uses the term “intern” and “volunteer” interchangeably. 

Is prior direct experience working with someone with autism required? 

While we always love to hear about any personal or professional experiences you have working with individuals with ASD, this is not a requirement. 

Will there be opportunities to shadow or observe medical appointments for patients

We try to build in at least one clinical shadowing opportunity throughout your time with our program, though depending on the projects and responsibilities you have throughout your placement there may be other occasions to observe in clinic. 

Will there be opportunities to work directly with individuals with ASD and their families? 

Our internship placements are rich and dynamic, such that each intern’s experience is unique to their interest and the skills they bring forth to the program. There are often tasks and projects that provide interns the opportunity to interact directly with families. Please note, however, that our program does not provide direct therapeutic services to individuals.

Am I expected to be on campus? Do you offer remote opportunities? 

Currently given the COVID-19 pandemic and safety protocols, ALL of our internship and volunteer opportunities are remote. We anticipate that our placements will remain remote for the foreseeable future, and we will update our website to reflect a shift to in-person placements once it is safe to do so. 

Do I need to be enrolled in an academic program to participate in an intern/volunteer opportunity?

You do not need to be enrolled in a college or university program to participate in a placement with our program. 

How many hours am I expected to dedicate to this internship/volunteer placement? 

This varies. Depending on the duration and nature of the placement, interns may dedicate more hours than others, typically, ranging from 4-15 hours per week.  

What will my day-to-day as an intern look like?

This varies greatly depending on the project(s) that you are working on. For examples of intern projects and activities, please check out the Project Groups Description tab below.

Who will be my supervisor during my placement? What does the supervision structure look like? 

Each intern is typically overseen by one or two staff members who serve as their primary supervisor(s) for the duration of their placement. In some cases, interns work with multiple staff supervisors across the team.  The supervisor(s) is assigned based on an interns interest/experience and project areas assigned. In most cases, interns will receive weekly supervision to discuss project goals and provide feedback.   

Internship Partnerships

The BMC Autism Program has developed ongoing collaborative partnerships with several local colleges and universities across the metro Boston area. More broadly, however, our students and volunteers come representing many more educational institutions from all across the state and across the country.

Project Groups Description

General Programmatic Operations

This project groups works under the director and associate director to assist in identifying and writing grants, solicit community partnerships, liaise with stakeholders and support projects not otherwise specified.

Autism Friendly Initiative

This project group works under our autism friendly hospital project coordinator and focuses on scaling up autism friendly interventions, collecting data on intervention effectiveness, tailor trainings, conduct autism support checklist screeners, disseminate sensory friendly toolkits, and other efforts to evolve and expand the autism friendly hospital initiative.

Resource/Family Support

This project groups works under our autism resource specialists to support family support efforts including identifying resources and programming for families in their local community, processing referrals for outside therapeutic services, developing tailored social stories and visuals, engaging with families over the phone to identify needs, creating new written resources, contributing to our newsletter content, managing social media efforts, and supporting the work of staff in empowering families to follow through on action steps needed.

Research

This project group works under our research coordinator who conducts research efforts within the Autism Program. Tasks include assisting in study protocol development, data collection and analysis, Institutional Review Board (IRB) applications, drafting manuscripts for journal publications, drafting poster/abstracts for conferences, presenting findings, and other research-related tasks.

Skills & Abilities of Interns

Required:

  • Comfort and/or experience working with individuals and groups from diverse backgrounds, disciplines, and communities.
  • Excellent analytical, problem-solving, communication, and time-management skills.
  • Ability to effectively contribute within a team setting, in addition to working independently and an ability for self-accountability
  • Capacity and willingness to learn about Autism Spectrum Disorder and related issues faced by families navigating the diagnosis, as well as associated community based agencies, programs, resources and supports, under the mentorship of the Program Manager and BMC Autism Program staff.

The Autism Program at Boston Medical Center is committed to sharing values of diversity and inclusion in order to achieve and sustain excellence. We actively promote and recognize principles of fairness, equity, and social justice in relation to, and across, intersections of race, age, color, disability, faith, religion, ancestry, national origin, citizenship, sex, sexual orientation, social class, economic class, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, and all other identities. By actively fostering an environment and mission of inclusion, we acknowledge the collective and individual talents, skills, and perspectives of all persons collaborating with and supporting our work that productively contribute to accomplishing the goal and mission of our program.

Preferred:

  • Prior professional work or personal experience with an individual impacted by Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Proficiency in a language other than English

Current and Past Interns and Volunteers

Fall 2021

Claudia Hyman, Tufts University (Capstone)
Victoria Oliviera, Lesley University
Saira Saeed, Boston University
Musfika Mishi, Boston University
Rameen Awan, Loyola University
Sarah Foster, Tufts University (Capstone)

Spring 2021

Allison Green
Brianne Achin, Southern New Hampshire University
Cindy Luo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Geethika Bodanapu, Boston University
Isabel Jang, Boston University
Jeffrey Shi, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Madelyn Goskoski, Merrimack, College
Mindy Duggan, Tufts University
Nichole Kyprianou, Boston University
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
River Grace, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Sarah Lincoln, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Surya Adeleye, Tufts University
Tobi Abubakare, Harvard University

MIT IAP 2021

Cindy Luo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Dasha Castillo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Eleane Lema, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Emily Chen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Jeffrey Shi, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Kaitlyn Pryzdzial, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Malhaar Agrwal, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Ria Kolli, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
River Grace, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Sarah Lincoln, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Valeria Robayo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Veronica Perdomo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Fall 2020

Brianne Achin, Southern New Hampshire University
Deryn Fishman, Tufts University
Twinkle Suthar, Tufts University
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Lia Tian, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Madelyn Goskoski, Merrimack, College
Nichole Kyprianou, Boston University
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Surya Adeleye, Tufts University
Tobi Abubakare, Harvard University

Summer 2020

Aneesh Samineni, Boston University School of Medicine
Annie Dumont, Medway High School '20
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Jake Merritt, Wellesley High School
Nichole Kyprianou, Boston University
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Tobi Abubakare, Harvard University

Spring 2020

Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Deryn Fishman, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Hannah Riehl, Tufts University (Graduate)
Kiersten Ayoub, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science
Laura Silva, Northeastern University
Nichole Kyprianou, Boston University
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Sylvia Zhou, Boston College
Tobi Abubakare, Harvard University

Winter 2020

PKG IAP, Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
Cailey Talbot
Caroline Bao
Eleane Lema
Giselle Peng
Hailey Kanoe Evile
Kayla Tabb
Mallika Pajjuri
Mercy Oladipo
Patricia Gao
Roberto Bolli
Sahithi Madireddy
Trevor Ewald

Fall 2019

Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Deryn Fishman, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Hannah Riehl, Tufts University (Graduate)
Nichole Kyprianou, Boston University
Pema Maretich, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Samir Ahmad, Boston University
Sylvia Zhou, Boston College

Summer 2019

Annie Dumont, Medway High School
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Christine Huang, Bryn Mawr College
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Katie Lagana-Foley, Quinnipiac University
Maja Kalkofen, University of Twente '19
Mary Morrison, Saint Anselm College
Olivia Gaffney, Lesley University '19
Pema Maretich, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Samantha Treff, Penn State University
Zachary Bisconti, Tulane University

Spring 2019

Abigail Kraines, Northeastern University
Amanda Carvalho da Silva, Emerson College
Belinda Tanuwijaya, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Darcie Lester
Elena Bricker, Boston University
Elizabeth Farber, Boston University
Kate Finegold, Harvard University (Graduate)
Pema Maretich, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Roksolana Sikyrynska, Boston University
Sarah Ellenor, Tufts University (Graduate)
Sarah Fahey, Boston University
Sharon Chao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Stephanie-Cara Durbano, Boston University

Winter 2019

Amanda Carvalho da Silva, Emerson College
Belinda Tanuwijaya, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Darcie Lester
Maja Kalkofen, University of Twente
Olivia Gaffney, Lesley University
PKG IAP, Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
Amy Liu
Katherine Hahn
Lia Hsu-Rodriguez
Margaret Zhang
Meghan Davis
Meghana Kamineni
Merryn Davis
Nolawit Mulugeta
Ohyoon Kwon
Sarah DiIorio
Shreya Thipireddy
Sharon Chao
Taylor Sorenson

Fall 2018

Amanda Carvalho da Silva, Emerson College
Belinda Tanuwijaya, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Darcie Lester
Emili Husain, Boston University
Maja Kalkofen, University of Twente
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University
Roksolana Sikyrynska, Boston University
Sharon Chao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Stephanie-Cara Durbano, Boston University
Sura Hassoun, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science
Tess Jacobson, Tufts University

Summer 2018

Cara Birkby, Boston University
Chihchen Huang, Northeastern University (Post-Bacc)
Christine Huang, Bryn Mawr College
Katherine Lynch, New York University
Maddie Speaker, Penn State University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Megan Platt, Elon University
Olivia Gaffney, Lesley University
Pooja Sonikar, Boston University
Renee Vogel, Boston University
Sarah Thurlow, College of the Holy Cross
Sophie Rinkoff-Murland, Boston University '18

Spring 2018

Cara Birkby, Boston University
Daniel Cahill, Boston University (Graduate Thesis)
Eri Tomikawa, Boston University
Jacalyn Bedard, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Graduate)
Jenna Terio, Tufts University
Julia Goupil, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Kaitlyn McArdle, MS, BCBA, LABA
Kirquenique Rolle, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Samson Park, Cornell University '14
Sharon Chao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Sophie Rinkoff-Murland, Boston University
Yichen Zhu, Tufts University (Graduate)

Winter 2018

Christine Huang, Bryn Mawr College
Daniel Cahill, Boston University (Graduate Thesis)
Olivia Gaffney, Lesley University
Four Weeks for America, Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
Amy Zhang
Anubhav Arora (Graduate)
Claire Nobuhara
Coral Bays-Muchmore
Jacalyn Bedard (Graduate)
Julia Goupil
Kenechukwu Egbuonu
Lia Hsu-Rodriguez
Maedeh Marzoughi
Melody Phu
Philip Tran
Roma Pradhan
Samuel Solomon
Sharon Chao

Fall 2017

Asia Williams, Northeastern University
Courtney Grygiel, Tufts University
Daniel Cahill, Boston University (Graduate Thesis)
Jaanvi Sant, Tufts University
Jenna Terio, Tufts University
Julia Goupil, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Kirquenique Rolle, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Sharon Chao, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Summer 2017

Andrea Wood, Wheaton College
Christine Huang, Bryn Mawr College (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Hanna Dunsky, University of Connecticut
Jenna Terio, Tufts University
Julia Goupil, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Spring 2017

Jenna Terio, Tufts University
Julia Goupil, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Katherine Farnsworth, Harvard University (Graduate)
Nicolle Garcia, Bridgewater State University
Phanirekha Chandra, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)
Sama Halawani, King Saud University '13

Winter 2017

Four Weeks for America, Massachusetts Institute of Technology 
Amy Zhang
Andrew Hall
Chittampalli Yashaswini
Helena Ma
Julia Ginder
Julia Goupil
Julie Kim
Luzdary Ruelas
Raymond Liu
Yvette Abadi

Fall 2016

Ana Goodenberger, Northeastern University
Aurora Phillips, Tufts University
Phanirekha Chandra, Boston University (Dual internship with BU CARE)

Summer 2016

Cara Aborn, Trinity College
Rachel Hantman, University of Washington
Shamaila Khan, Brandeis University

Spring 2016

Elizabeth Wolock, Tufts University
Liza Ashley, Northeastern University
Megan Souza, Tufts University
Simone Dufresne, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)

Fall 2015

Chrissie Massrey, Tufts University '14
Joyce Kao, Social Work Intern
Maddy Kenler, Tufts University
Samantha Fine, Tufts University
Samantha Watts, Boston University
Simone Dufresne, Tufts University (Graduate Capstone)

Summer 2015

Chrissie Massrey, Tufts University '14
Christina Besosa, University of Georgia
Elana Lerner, Alvernia University (Graduate)
Julia Slater, Tufts University

Spring 2015

Chrissie Massrey, Tufts University '14
Lauren Gabriel, Tufts University (Graduate)
Lauren Mattera, Boston University
Lindsay Rosen, Tufts University (Graduate)
Rachel Wright, Tufts University

Fall 2014

Kara Czeczotka, Boston University
Rachel Wright, Tufts University
Sara Taxman, Tufts University

Summer 2014

Alyssa LoGrasso, Clark University
Grace Conway, Wake Forest University
Hayley Grossman, Tufts University

Spring 2014

Gabby Horner, Tufts University
Jillian McDermott, University of Massachusetts Lowell
Shannon McHenry, Tufts University

Fall 2013

Jacquelyn Roche, Northeastern University
Samantha Straitz, Boston University
Sasha Parodi, Boston University

Summer 2013

Dan Vogel, Colby College
Jolie Strauss, Tufts University
Laurie Steiglitz, Boston University