“Gain an Edge” Summer Program

 Academic and Professional Skills

 Case Study Research Projects

Week 1 - 2

Week 3 - 4

Learn the skills to be successful in an academic and professional setting including:
  • Time Management Skills
  • Study and Test Taking Techniques
  • Analytical and Critical Thinking Skills
  • Career Development Skills
Perform research and present a case study on current health-related topics, such as:
  • Opioid Abuse
  • Mental Health
  • Emerging Infectious Diseases
  • Antibiotics Resistance


 Work with students from around the country in this fully online, asynchronous program to "gain an edge" in your academic and professional pursuits.

The George Washington University’s (GW) School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) Biomedical Laboratory Sciences (BLS) Department plans to hold the annual “Gain an Edge” summer program. This is a virtual, four-week program designed to build skills to enhance academic and professional career success.   

Program Structure

The goal of the program is to provide foundational skills to prepare individuals to be successful in college and the workforce.  There are two major components of this program. The first component will cover areas that students will need to be successful in an academic or professional setting, such as:

  • Time management
  • Study and test-taking skills
  • Professionalism and ethics
  • Communication skills
  • Resume building
  • Financial literacy  

The second component will emphasize research strategies and design using a multidisciplinary and inter-professional approach that will focus on current issues in health and biomedical sciences. This component will cover:

  • Research theory
  • Scientific writing
  • Citations
  • References
  • Group research project 
  • Group research presentations
Program Outcomes

At the successful completion of the Gain an Edge Program, learners will be able to:

  1. Compare and contrast professionalism in the workplace and in the classroom.
  2. Prepare a cover letter and resume for a school or job application.
  3. Apply time management techniques to conduct a one-week time audit 
  4. Identify five different ways to address test-taking and academic anxiety
  5. Describe best practices for financial planning.
  6. Recognize at least three ways to avoid plagiarism when writing.
  7. Demonstrate the use of in-text citations when writing a research paper.
  8. Conduct an appropriate literature review in APA format.
  9. Deliver an organized and effective oral presentation.
Program Details

Session Dates: June 24 - July 21

  • Description:
    • This is a virtual (fully online) four-week program that can be completed asynchronously. The program includes daily modules that consist of learning activities.  You can complete all of the activities in the first two weeks on your own time.  
    • The second two weeks include a group research project in which you will need to coordinate and work with your group members to complete the project.
    • There is a faculty Q/A where you can ask program-related questions with weekly virtual office hours available. 
    • To complete the virtual program, you must have a working computer and a reliable internet connection. 
  • Location: Virtual
  • Fee: $425.00 per person
    • If accepted into the “Gain an Edge” summer program, the applicant will be provided an acceptance letter outlining information on how to submit a registration fee of $425.00 via credit card.
  • Application Deadline: Monday, May 27, 2024 at 11:59 PM ET
Student Testimonials

I would 100% recommend this program to others! It's a wonderful opportunity to work with others and hone research skills and the like.  Memeunatu Sesay, Woodbridge Senior High School Class of 2026

GW’s Gain an Edge program was able to help me strive and reach my goals. The program provided different skills to use in general studying, working and researching. I found a lot of these skills and tips useful and still use them now in my sophomore year of high school, especially because I’m taking a research class. Yuri Cho, Centreville High School Class of 2026

Applying to the Gain an Edge Program
Additional Details

Certificate of Completion

  • Students will receive a certificate of completion that can be listed on resumes, college applications, or for volunteer hours.
  • Certificate of Completion will be awarded only to students who complete all of the modules by the deadlines.


If you have any questions, please email gwgainanedge@gwu.edu.

Financial Assistance

Applicants who come from a family with an annual income below a level based on low-income thresholds established by the U.S. Census Bureau will be considered for financial aid. Further information about this will be provided in our application.