Research Experiences for Undergraduates Provide Opportunities for Engineering Students

Thursday, May 05, 2011

For students who take part in the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates program, learning opportunities don’t end when the semester does. This program connects undergraduate students with summer research projects at colleges and universities across the country.

In the College of Engineering, many students take advantage of this program, including Thomas Rembert and Abigail Washipack. Rembert is an Honors College student majoring in electrical engineering and physics. He will be spending the summer at MIT, doing research at the Materials Processing Center.

Washipack, an Honors College student majoring in biological engineering, will be working with Kit Parker, a biomedical engineering professor at Harvard University. Her group will be studying the heart cells of zebra fish. These cells, which have properties that are similar to human heart cells, may help researchers learn more about treating heart disease.

The University of Arkansas also hosts REUs, where visiting students can conduct research in areas such as sustainability ethics, nanomaterials and biotechnology. University of Arkansas undergraduate research programs are sponsored by the departments of biological engineering, chemistry, mechanical engineering and physics, the Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences, the microelectronics and photonics program, the cell and molecular biology program and the George Washington Carver Research Program.

“REUs are a great way to introduce students to research, and get them thinking about graduate school,” said Bryan Hill, assistant dean of recruitment. “For many undergraduates, it’s their first exposure to the kind of research that goes on in graduate school, which makes it a great recruiting opportunity.”

Contacts:

Camilla Medders, director of communications
College of Engineering
479-575-5697, camillam@uark.edu

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