Undergraduate research is transformational.
This project seeks to match faculty with historically excluded first year and transfer students who are interested in gaining mentored research or creative experiences. Students and faculty mentors will join learning communities to receive professional development and will be paid for their time.
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For undergraduate students, the positive outcomes of engaging in research are numerous: increasing interest in graduate education, viewing oneself as a scientist or researcher, improving critical thinking and writing skills, increasing independence and creativity, and strengthening teamwork and communication skills. It is important to remove barriers and increase access to research opportunities. Considered a High Impact Practice (HIP) because it has the potential to positively impact learning outcomes, retention, and graduation, undergraduate research is particularly important for historically excluded students.
Unfortunately, studies show transfer students and students from historically excluded populations are less likely to participate in HIPs like student research for a variety of reasons. Barriers include lack of awareness of research opportunities and their benefits, perceived barriers of interaction with faculty, and personal and financial barriers. Additionally, while studies demonstrate the impact of these opportunities is greatest for students earlier in their college career, most students are offered these types of opportunities as upper year students. Transfer students face the additional barrier of a shorter time at the institution in which to develop relationships with faculty to obtain such opportunities.
To address these concerns, we are proposing a match program aimed at serving these populations. In early Fall 2022, interested faculty would submit an application which describes a research or creative project that would provide an immersive opportunity for at least one student to assist with the project in the Spring of 2023. Under the mentorship of the faculty member, students would be expected to work for 5-6 hours a week, for a total of 80-96 hours over the semester. These student research assistants will be paid, and each participating faculty member will receive a stipend for their time and labor.
Read the full proposal.