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Microsoft Corporation Research Intern - GSL in Redmond, Washington

Virtual Internship

P articipation in the Research Internship Program requires that you are physically located in the United States or Canada for the duration of the internship.

Research Internships at Microsoft provide a dynamic environment for research careers with a network of world-class research labs led by globally-recognized scientists and engineers. Our researchers and engineers pursue innovation in a range of scientific and technical disciplines to help solve complex challenges in diverse fields, including computing, healthcare, economics, and the environment.

Gray Systems Lab (GSL ( ) is an applied research lab under Azure Data. We do research and development for databases, big-data, and cloud systems and work in close collaboration with product teams to design innovative solutions for real-world problems. Our inclusive and welcoming team currently has focus areas in topics such as query optimization and execution, machine learning for systems, systems for machine learning, data science, resource management, storage systems, modern/future hardware (e.g. NVM and FPGAs), program analysis, cross system optimization, and data provenance, all centered around both internal and open-source systems such as Spark, SQL Server, MySQL, Hadoop, MLFlow, ONNX, and others. There are opportunities to work on ideas from internal, as well as external, collaborations with partner universities and to continue to be an active scholar in the research community.

We are looking for highly motivated graduate students, who are interested in cutting edge research in close collaboration with advanced industry product groups. Past internships have resulted in a combination of impact on production systems and publications at top conferences. Applicants should demonstrate a track record in one or more systems or data science topics and an aptitude for hands-on system building and design methodology to run and analyze experiments at scale.


Interns put inquiry and theory into practice. Alongside fellow doctoral candidates and some of the world’s best researchers, interns learn, collaborate, and network for life. Interns not only advance their own careers, but they also contribute to exciting research and development strides. During the 12-week internship, students are paired with mentors and expected to collaborate with other interns and researchers, present findings, and contribute to the vibrant life of the community. Research internships are available in all areas of research, and are offered year-round, though they typically begin in the summer.


In addition to the qualifications below, you’ll need to submit a minimum of two reference letters for this position. After you submit your application, a request for letters may be sent to your list of references on your behalf. Note that reference letters cannot be requested until after you have submitted your application, and furthermore, that they might not be automatically requested for all candidates. You may wish to alert your letter writers in advance, so they will be ready to submit your letter.

Required Qualifications

  • Currently pursuing a PhD degree in computer science, statistics, mathematics, or related technical field.

P articipation in the Research Internship Program requires that you are physically located in the United States or Canada for the duration of the internship.

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience with one of the following PostgreSQL, MySQL, SQL Server, Spark, Hadoop, or other database or big data systems.

  • Experience contributing to research communities and/or efforts, including publishing papers (being listed as author) at academic conferences.

  • Should be able to take initiative, but also follow a research/productization plan and work well as part of a team.

  • Experience with one or more general purpose programming languages such as Python, Java, C#, C++.

  • Excellent critical thinking and communication skills.

Microsoft is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, ancestry, color, family or medical care leave, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, national origin, physical or mental disability, political affiliation, protected veteran status, race, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws, regulations and ordinances. We also consider qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements. If you need assistance and/or a reasonable accommodation due to a disability during the application or the recruiting process, please send a request via the Accommodation request form ( .

Benefits/perks listed below may vary depending on the nature of your employment with Microsoft and the country where you work.