Sample Inquiry Emails for Research Assistant Positions
As referenced in Season 1, Episode 4 of The Psychology PhD Podcast.
Dear Prof. [Lab #1 PI’s Name],
[Colleague Name] recommended I reach out to you regarding volunteer research opportunities at the [Lab #1 Name] Lab this summer.
My name is [Student Name] and I am currently studying psychology in the post-baccalaureate program here at [University Name]. Prior to joining this program, I worked in [Field] as a [Position] for nearly [Number] years. (Attached please find my CV for your review.)
I am keenly interested in [Topic(s) of Interest Studied by Lab #1], and I am excited by the opportunity to research these concepts with a team whose key areas of study so clearly align with my interests. I especially enjoyed your most recent paper on [Topic], and I would be interested to learn more about your lab’s current directions on this topic. I am also a Research Assistant at the [Lab #2 Name] Lab, and I'm thrilled at the chance to complement my work there with the [Descriptor of What Makes Lab #1 Special] perspective that experience at the [Lab #1 Name] Lab would provide me.
I would be grateful for the chance to volunteer or participate in an unpaid internship in the [Lab #1 Name] Lab this summer. Would you be willing to meet in the coming weeks to discuss the opportunity to join your team as a research assistant?
Many thanks in advance for your reply!
Dear Dr. [Lab #1 PI’s Name],
My name is [Student Name] and I am a [University Year] majoring in [Major]. I am currently completing my undergraduate honors thesis in Dr. [Lab #2 PI’s Name]’s lab at [Institution]. During my time here, I have investigated [Specific Focus of Student’s Work in Lab #2]. This experience has led to my broad interest in [Topic(s) of Interest Studied by Lab #1].
As I approach graduation, I have been searching for paid laboratory assistant positions for the coming year. I’m particularly interested in your lab’s investigation of [One Specific Focus of Lab #1’s Current Work]. Additionally, I went on to research your lab’s current projects on NIH RePORTER and became interested in your collaboration with [Collaborating Lab] regarding [Another Specific Focus of Lab #1’s Current Work].
If your lab is currently looking for research assistants, I’d love to get more information about the position. If not, I’d be interested to hear if you have any suggestions of other people to work with. Attached is my CV.