The Vanderbilt Summer Science Academy (VSSA) offers biomedical research opportunities to undergraduates who want to pursue a career in the biomedical sciences. Although each participating program operates independently, the academy unites students and provides them with opportunities for academic and social interaction. There are two major tracks within the VSSA; the Basic Science Programs for undergraduates interested in careers in research, and the Undergraduate Clinical Research Internship Program for undergraduates who wish to pursue a career in medicine. Participation in any one of the Summer Science Academy programs is a valuable learning experience that enhances a student's skills and makes him or her more competitive for acceptance to frontline graduate programs. Depending on the program, participants may receive housing and a stipend.