Research Summer Internship (Computational Biology)



Menlo Park, CA, USA
Posted on Thursday, December 21, 2023
GRAIL is a healthcare company whose mission is to detect cancer early, when it can be cured. GRAIL is focused on alleviating the global burden of cancer by developing pioneering technology to detect and identify multiple deadly cancer types early. The company is using the power of next-generation sequencing, population-scale clinical studies, and state-of-the-art computer science and data science to enhance the scientific understanding of cancer biology, and to develop its multi-cancer early detection blood test. GRAIL is headquartered in Menlo Park, CA with locations in Washington, D.C., North Carolina, and the United Kingdom. GRAIL, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN). For more information, please visit
We are seeking Masters or PhD level students for this 10-week summer intern position where you will be part of the Research team working at the interface of our one-of-a kind DNA methylation-based dataset of >10,000 cell-free DNA samples, world-class cloud computing infrastructure, and unparalleled curated clinical data to discover novel biological insights into the detection of early stage cancer.
You will be trained in the development of methods, analysis, pipelines, and algorithms of next-generation sequencing data, for cancer detection, conformant to CLIA guidelines.
You will enjoy life in the San Francisco Bay Area, activities with other summer interns, and start-up company culture.
You will expected to be onsite in Menlo Park, CA with our team 2-5 days a week during your internship. Start date is June 3, end date is Aug 16. There is a one week unpaid summer break July 1-5th

You Will:

  • Work on complex computational problems requiring exploratory data analysis, use of custom and existing bioinformatics tools, and application of various statistical and machine learning methods.
  • Find new solutions to open-ended problems through collaboration with software engineers, data scientists, and bench scientists.
  • Create programmatic workflows for manipulating, analyzing, and visualizing very large and disparate data sets.
  • Exercise judgment in defining methods, techniques and evaluation criteria for obtaining results.
  • Translate findings into recommendations for the development of new products.

Possible areas of focus:

  • Apply machine learning methods to help model and interpret biological data, identify and validate genomic features driving tumor development.
  • Develop and implement new or existing tools for visualizing novel genomic datasets to help drive bioinformatics and data science efforts.

Your Background Should Include:

  • Pursuing a Masters or Ph.D. in Bioinformatics, Computational Biology or related field.
  • Previous Life Science or Machine Learning research experience.
  • Experience with programmatic workflows for manipulating, analyzing, and visualizing very large and disparate data sets.
  • Experienced with statistics as applied to the analysis of high-dimensional biological data and analytical study design.
  • Demonstrated understanding in at least one programming language (Python, Java/C++, Go, R) and proficiency in Linux environment.

Bonus Skills:

  • Knowledge of cloud technologies (such as AWS).
  • Experience with source control practices and tools (Perforce, Git, Arcanist, etc.).
  • Familiarity with TensorFlow.
  • Experience with R package + Shiny app development.
The expected hourly pay scale for this position for Masters: $50/hr or PhD: $55/hr. Actual hourly pay will consider skills, experience, and location.
Based on the role, colleagues may be eligible to participate in an annual bonus plan tied to company and individual performance, or an incentive plan. We also offer a long-term incentive plan to align company and colleague success over time.
In addition, GRAIL offers a progressive benefit package, including flexible time-off, a 401k with a company match, and alongside our medical, dental, vision plans, carefully selected mindfulness offerings.
GRAIL is an Equal Employment Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability or any other legally protected status. We will reasonably accommodate all individuals with disabilities so that they can participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation. GRAIL maintains a drug-free workplace.