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How to apply

Please read our application guide before applying. On the left side of this page you will find templates for the CV and letter of motivation .

Applications are submitted through our application portal. You will be required to provide personal information and the following documents:

  • CV (max. 2 pages)
  • Motivational letter (please use the template provided below/on the side)
    • General motivation to pursue a career in science and to participate in this internship
    • Description of previous projects
    • Motivation for up to two MPIIB-ISI projects in order of preference (please refer to the available projects)
    • Statement on factors that may limit the applicant's access to higher education at an internationally renowned institution, e.g. financial, regional or personal circumstances
  • A letter of reference from a professor or postdoc
  • Transcripts of all your undergraduate and graduate records (if your university does not provide official English translations, please provide one yourself)
  • Diploma (if you have already completed your bachelor’s degree)

The application portal requires you to upload a “Cover letter”. Please submit your motivational letter here. The application portal also requires you to upload a “Resume”. Please submit your CV here.

Please be sure to review and submit your complete application before the deadline of November 26, 2023. Once the application has been submitted, no further changes or additional document uploads will be possible. You will receive a confirmation email that your application has been successfully submitted.

Only complete applications submitted through our online application portal will be considered. Applications submitted via email will not be reviewed.

Application guide

The information below will serve as a guide for what to include in your application and how to structure it effectively. The CV and cover letter are the two most important documents you will submit. They will tell us a little more about you, your interests, and your aptitude. In addition, you will need to submit a reference letter from a professor or postdoc with whom you have worked. Such a letter will help us get a better picture of you as a student. Feel free to include any other items that you think will strengthen your application.

CV (max. two pages)


The primary purpose of the CV is to provide the reader with a quick overview of your academic and professional background, accomplishments, relevant extracurricular activities, and skills. It should be no longer than 2 pages with a font size of at least 11 pt.

Please do not include any photos of yourself in your application (including your CV). This helps to reduce unconscious bias when reviewing.

You can refer to the CV template provided on this website, but feel free to design your own. Note that the template is only a guideline to give you an idea of the different items you can list and the order in which they typically appear. Feel free to include anything else you think will make your application stand out (and delete any sections/items that do not apply to you from the template if you use it). Within each section, you should arrange the information in chronological order (most recent first) or, when they do not have a date, in order of importance (with more significant experiences/achievements first). Do not go back further than your high school graduation unless you have significant skills or accomplishments that are relevant to this internship.

Whenever you include your GPA/average, be sure to provide the range of grades used in your grading system, i.e., the lowest and highest possible grades. Readers may not be familiar with your country's grading system.

Motivation letter


Please use the template provided on this website and save it as a PDF.

The main goal of this letter is to convince the reader why you are a good fit for the position. The letter consists of four main parts:

  1. Your general motivation for the internship program. Here you should describe what brought you to your chosen academic field, the research questions you are interested in, what you hope to learn and how it might fit with your next academic steps, and what you find particularly interesting about this program.
  2. A project description. Here you should describe a relevant course you have completed or a work project you did. Tell us about your experience, especially what you learned and what challenges you faced.
  3. Your motivation for selected projects. Here you should explain why you are interested in this particular project, what relevant skills you have, and how you meet the requirements.
  4. A statement describing any factors that limit your access to world-class higher education.

The motivation letter is very short, so be concise and to the point. This should not be a resume where you list all your accomplishments or experiences—tell a story and highlight only the most relevant points. Please note that applications with too many words, even within one section, will not be considered. Remember, this is only a guideline. Feel free to include any other items that you consider to enhance your application.

1. General motivation (max. 150 words)

The following items are examples of what you could include in this section:

  • Why are you interested or what made you interested in the field of Biology/Medicine/Biochemistry, Biotechnology/...? This could be a lecture, a course you took at university, a professor, some questions or problems that fascinated you, a societal problem you want to address, etc.
  • Are there any specific research questions that interest you? This does not need to be very detailed, but it should give a general direction for your research.
  • Describe your academic background. Talk about the degrees and subjects you have chosen, relevant coursework you have completed, any relevant workshops you have attended.
  • Do you have previous research experience? You should highlight the knowledge and skills you have that are relevant to the Internship here in Berlin.
  • Why and how will your participation in the MPIIB-ISI and your visit to Berlin and Germany be of benefit to you? Is there anything else you hope to get out of the internship besides the academic aspect?

2. Project description (max. 150 words)

You may want to tell us about a course you took or describe an independent project you worked on. Perhaps you have already completed an internship where you worked on a project. What were your responsibilities, what were the results, and what skills did you develop? You could also tell us about challenges that you faced and how you responded to them. Try to relate your description to the MPIIB-ISI.

3. Motivation for project (max. 2x 150 words)

Choose up to two projects that you find interesting and describe your motivation for each. You could include the following:

  • Why are you interested in this project? Relate this to your interests and experience.
  • What do you expect to learn from this project? What scientific skills and knowledge do you hope to gain? Are there any social skills you hope to develop?
  • Describe, point by point, how you meet the requirements stated in the project description and how your skills will help you in the project.

4. Statement on factors limiting access to first-class higher education (max. 300 words)

Write a short essay telling us about your personal background. Describe the challenges you have faced or are facing that make it difficult for you to pursue higher education, especially at a top research institution. This could be any financial disadvantage, lack of access to resources and information, discrimination based on gender, race, caste, sexuality, or other categories, physical disability, class, etc.

Letter of reference


Please ask a professor (or postdoc) with whom you have worked or taken a course to write a letter of reference (sometimes called a letter of recommendation). A letter of reference is typically a positive, one-page letter endorsing you as a suitable candidate for the internship. The letter should include contact information of the person writing the letter.

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