Student Research at Aquinas College

Research Opportunities

Programs & Experiences

Looking for a summer undergraduate research experience? The peak period for notices of this type of program is between December and March.

Pathways to Computing Program

The Pathways to Computing Internship Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is a 10-week summer program that provides undergraduate students with research projects in computer science, computational science, and mathematics. The program runs June 3 to August 9, 2019. Participants receive $500/week stipend, housing allowance, and travel assistance. Applications are being accepted now and positions will be filled on a rolling basis; apply as soon as possible for the best chance of being selected.

ADAPT4U Research Assistantships

The ADAPT4U (After Deployment: Adaptive Parenting Tools) Research Study is looking for students interested in gaining research experience working with millitary families in West Michigan. The study seeks to evaluate tools to support millitary famility as they cope with the stresses of deployment and reintegration. Research assistants would conduct in-home assessments. Assessments take place during weekday afternoons and evenings and on weekends. Applicants must be willing to travel up to an hour from Grand Rapids; drive time and mileage is compensated. This part-time assistantship pays $15/hour. Contact Suzanne Tydd ( or 612-624-9675).

National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure Programs

Twelve member sites of the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure group are offering summer research experiences to undergraduate students. Specific technical areas vary by site but projects are available within the broad fields of physics, chemistry, materials science, electronic devices, and biology/biomechanical engineering. Most projects are 10 weeks long and all include a stipend, housing, and travel support. Some sites also include meal plans. Students must apply to each site separately. The earliest due date for applications is January 31, 2019.

Monterey Bay Regional Ocean Science Research Experience

Hosted by California State University Monterey Bay, this 10 week program offers undergraduate students an opportunity to collaborate with mentors to develop hypothesis-driven projects. The program takes place June 3 through August 9, 2019. Participants receive a $5000 stipend, travel and housing support. Applications are due February 11, 2019.

Chemistry at University of Kansas

This program provides initial research experiences to undergraduate students majoring in chemistry or a closely-related field. Projects are interdisciplinary and mentored by research professors. Participants receive a $5000 stipend for 10 weeks of work, free housing and meals, and a travel allowance. Applications due February 15.

Synthesis, Assembly, and Characterization of Soft Matter

This program at Cleveland State University is intended to provide sophomore and junior undergraduate physics and engineering students meaningful interdisciplinary research projects within soft matter science/engineering. Soft matter includes liquids, colloids, polymers, gels, and biological materials. Participants receive $5000 stipend for 10 weeks work, free housing, and travel funding. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Applications due February 15.

Disturbance Ecology in Central Appalachia

Undergraduate students will be paired with an Eastern Kentucky University professor to conduct research related to the animal and/or plant life of the region. Participants receive $5250 stipend, housing, travel support, meal allowance, and research supplies. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Applications are due February 15.

Gulf of Maine Research Institute

These summer internships provide opportunities for undergraduates interested in biological, ecological, and/or environmental sciences as they relate to fisheries management and climate change to gain work experience at sea and in the lab. Positions include a $500/wk stipend for 10 weeks, housing and meals. Applicants must be U.S. Citizens or permanent residents. Applications are due February 15.

Robert Frederick Smith Internship and Fellowship

Interns will be located at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (Washington, DC) or other African American museums, art galleries, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities, or related sites. All internship projects will relate to digital imaging, media preservation, preservation of personal and community artifacts, digital content management, or other conservation subjects. Participants receive $600/week, possible housing and travel support, structured mentorship opportunities, and professional development. Undergraduate applicants must have completed at least one year of study. The program lasts for 12 weeks. Register to participate in an informational webinar including step-by-step application instructions on January 29. Applications are due February 15.

Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

Research internships are available in a variety of fields related to environmental issues. Participants receive $550/week. Applications are due February 15 for summer projects (May-August), November 15 for winter/spring (January-April), and June 1 for fall (September-December). 

Physics and Engineering at Miami University

Participants will work on a research project with a faculty mentor for 10 weeks (May 28-August 2) and have opportunities for professional development. Participants receive a $5000 stipend, free housing, a meal allowance, and a research supplies fund. The program is open to U.S. citizens and permanent residents who are undergraduates majoring in physics or a closely-related field. Applications are due February 15.

Summer Fellowship National Center for Toxicological Research

Selected individuals will train alongside NCTR investigators who conduct research that provides scientific-based data for U.S. Food and Drug Administration policies. The appointment will be for ten weeks of full-time work beginning May 28 in Jefferson, Arkansas. The participant receives a monthly stipend based on educational level and experience. Applicants must be U.S. citizens at least 18 years of age, and must be students in good standing at an accredited college or university with a GPA of 2.5 or better. Eligible majors include physics, mathematics, statistics, engineering, and computer science; other physical and life science majors are also eligible. Applications due February 15.

Summer Research Internship Program at Van Andel Institute

This program provides undergraduate students with a 10-week research experience, mentored by professionals, in the areas of epigenetics, cancer & cell biology, or neurobiology. Students will learn about the latest research methods, instruments, and procedures while designing experiments and contributing to ongoing research projects. There are two possible sessions: May 20 to July 26 or June 3 to August 9. Applicants must have completed one year of undergraduate coursework (24 credits) and have a minimum 3.0 GPA. International students are eligible to apply. Participants are paid $11/hour or more, depending on qualifications. Applications due February 15. 

Polymer Science and Polymer Engineering Program

Hosted at the University of Akron, students will participate in an 11-week research experience to investigate a fundamental question within the broad disciplines of polymer science and polymer engineering, including chemistry, physics, engineering, and biomaterials. Participants will also have research and career development activities, discussions outlining their research progress, and visits to regional companies. Students will receive a $5500 stipend and $2000 for housing. The program runs May 28-August 9. Applications are due February 15, 2019.

Plant Health at Kansas State University

The program offers summer research opportunities in plant health and related subjects. Undergraduates will work with professors, graduate students, and/or postdoctoral scientists on projects that may be lab-, greenhouse-, or field-based. The program dates are May 28 to July 26. Participants receive a $4900 stipend, up to $600 for travel, and free housing and meals on campus. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents at least 18 years old. Applications due February 18.

Microbial Friends at Foes

Undergraduate students work with a faculty mentor at Cornell University to study a specific host-microbe system while learning to use tools in molecular biology, bioinformatics, evolution, ecology, population genetics, and related subjects. Participants receive $5750 as stipend, a travel allowance, and free housing. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Applications due February 21.

Math and Statistics at James Madison University

This eight week program provides undergraduate students the opportunity to work with faculty mentors on problems involving mathematics or statistics. The program takes place May 20 through July 12, 2019. Students receive a $4500 stipend, housing, and travel assistance. Applications are due February 21, 2019.

Security of Smart Things

This program at Florida International University engages undergraduate students in research concerning the security of smart things at the Advanced Wireless Security Research Lab and the Cyber-Physical Systems Security Lab. Participants receive $2000 per month, campus housing, meals, materials, and travel allowance. Applicants must be U.S. Citizens or permanent residents. Applications due February 22.

Analytical Studies Intern Program

The Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute offers short-term opportunities for undergraduates to work on research projects with staff members. The program lasts ten weeks during the summer. Undergraduates interested in museum studies, conservation studies, art history, anthropology, archaeology, chemistry, biology, ecology, earth sciences, chemical engineering, and materials science are encouraged to apply. Particpants receive a stipend. Applications due February 25.

Savannah River Ecology Laboratory Summer REU

Participants will spend 10 weeks (May 20-July26) at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory in South Carolina where they will receive training to perform interdisciplinary research in ecology, environmental chemistry, and ecosystem health with professional scientist mentors. Undergraduates who are U.S. Citizens or permanent residents with a minimum GPA of 3.0 are eligible to apply. Housing will be provided for free to participants, along with a stipend of $525/week, a food allowance, and travel reimbursement. Applications due February 28.

Nuclear Engineering Science Laboratory Synthesis (NESLS) Program

This summer program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) provides nuclear engineering research opportunities and associated activities for undergraduate students. The program includes a stipend of at least $500/ week, commensurate with experience, travel and housing support, and professional development activities. U.S. citizenship is not a requirement. Candidates must be at least 18 years old, enrolled in an accredited U.S. college or university, and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Applications for summer 2019 are due February 28.

Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Internships are available at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, providing undergraduate students a paid ($12.50/hour) opportunity to gain experience in a museum setting, including conservation, education, public relations, registration, and human resources. Participants work full time for 10 weeks during the summer. Housing is not provided. Applications due March 1.

Marine Corps History Division, Archives Branch

Summer internships are available in the fields of history, archives, editing and graphic design. These positions are paid an hourly wage, limited to 29 hours/week. Housing and meals are the responsibility of the participant. Applications are due March 1.

Brookings Institution

These unpaid internships cover a variety of potential topics including public policy and international affairs. Students may receive academic credit. Applicants must be enrolled as undergraduate students at an accredited college or university. International students who are legally able to intern or work in the U.S. are eligible to apply. The summer 2019 program dates are June 3 to August 9; fall 2019 dates are September 9 to December 6. Applications for summer are due March 1.

Environmental Health Sciences at University of Tennessee Knoxville

Undergraduate students are invited to get involved in research this summer for ten weeks (May 28-August 3) in a state-of-the-art laboratory studying various aspects of environmental health sciences. Participants receive a $3700 stipend, free housing, and travel reimbursement. Applicants should be U.S. Citizens or permanent residents. Applications due March 1.

Research in Chemistry at West Virginia University

This NSF REU Site provides participants 10 weeks of summer research (May 19-July 26) with intellectually stimulating projects with society relevance.U.S. citizens, nationals, and permanent residents are eligible to apply. Applicants must be enrolled in chemistry or biochemistry degree programs and have a GPA of 2.8 or above. Participants will receive a $5000 stipend, housing, meals, and travel reimbursement. Applications are due March 1.

Integrated Computational and Experimental Chemistry at North Carolina State University

Rising sophomore and junior undergraduate students are encouraged to apply for this summer research experience that combines experimental techniques and computational methods in interdisciplinary projects. The program runs ten weeks, from May 28 to August 2. Participants receive $4500 stipend and free housing during the program, travel funding is available. Applications due March 1.

Coatings and Polymeric Materials SURE Program at North Dakota State University

Summer 2019 research appointments are available for undergraduate students studying chemistry, materials science, chemical engineering, and related fields. Participants receive a $4000 stipend and an allowance for housing (on-campus housing is available). Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, enrolled at a U.S. institution, and ideally will have completed their junior years before the program starts. Applications are due March 1.

EERE Robotics Summer Internships

The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy (EERE) program is a 10-week summer internship for undergraduate students majoring in a field related to robotics, manufacturing, or engineering. Undergraduate students receive $600/week, a housing allowance, and travel funding. Applicants should be U.S. Citizens and at least 18 years old. Previous robotics experience is beneficial, but not required. Applications due March 5.

EXERCISE - Explore Emerging Computing in Science and Engineering

Students will apply emerging parallel computing models including GPU computing with NVIDA CUDA and Map Reduce computing on Amazon EC2 to solve problems in computer networks and security, image and signal processing, and geographic information systems. The program is ten weeks long. U.S. Citizens and permanent residents majoring in STEM fields and who have completed at least two years of undergraduate study with a GPA of at least 3.0 are eligible to apply. Participants receive a stipend of $5000, a travel allowance, on-campus housing and meals, field trips and social activities. Applications due March 10.

Old Sturbridge Village Internships (Massachusetts)

These internships are opportunities for undergraduates with interests in American history focusing on the 1830s, the Industrial Revolution, and agricultural history, as well as museum education and administration. Applicants must have completed at least one year of college study. Internships are 12 weeks of summer work. Participants receive a $1500 stipend, limited housing is available. Applications are due March 15.

Artificial Intelligence Summer Institute

Collaborate with Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists on solving problems of national and scientific interest, engage in educational and professional development opportunities, and explore career opportunities at national laboratories. Program dates are June 10 through August 16. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents, 18 years old, with GPA of 3.0 or better. Applications are due March 31.

Rock County (WI) Historical Society

Interns in the archives or historical maintenance/groundskeeping areas may be paid or unpaid, full- or part-time. Interns assist RCHS staff in daily operations while learning about museum activities. Applications for summer positions are due May 1. 

Higher Education Research Experiences (HERE) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory

The HERE program provides research opportunities for undergraduate students at various academic levels. Participate in cutting-edge projects, collaborate with prestigious international experts, develop solutions to pressing national problems. Those selected will also receive $500/week stipend and a housing allowance. Applications are accepted year-round, but apply by October 1 (spring), February 1 (summer), or June 1 (fall) for the best chance of a suitable placement in your preferred term. You must be 18 years or older, have medical insurance, and have a cumulative GPA of 2.5.

Professional Internship Program at NETL

This program of the National Energy Technology Laboratory is designed to introduce students to the challenges of conducting energy research. Participants interact with assigned mentors who guide their research activities. Applications are always accepted; for best results apply by February 15 for summer, June 1 for fall, and October 1 for spring appointments.

Oak Ridge Environmental Management Science Education and Internship Program

Offers undergraduate students and recent graduates opportunities to receive specialized training and practical experience on the safe cleanup of environmental projects. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Amway Internships

Search the Amway Careers site for internship opportunities available to undergraduates. Opportunities span many different disciplines and are offered year-round.

Aquinas Summer Scholars Grants

The proposal phase for 2019 is now open. This program provides an opportunity for student-faculty pairs to pursue a collaborative project during the summer break. Projects may come from any academic discipline. The program includes a stipend of $1500 for the student and $1000 for the faculty mentor of each team. Requirements include a written report at the end of the summer and presentation of the results of the project during the Student Research Symposium next spring. The application form is available from the Flannery Hall reception desk. Proposals are due to the Flannery Hall desk by 4:00 p.m on Friday February 22. Questions may be directed to Dr. Elizabeth Jensen ( The Writing Center staff is eager to assist you with your proposal.

Mohler-Thompson Summer Research Grants

Aquinas undergraduate students interested in participating in science or math research during the summer should contact any science or math faculty member to find out what projects are available and how to apply. Selection of students takes place between November and February. The 2019 round of grants is now open.

Student Internship Program at Van Andel Research Institute

Summer interns work with closely with a Van Andel scientist for 10 weeks. The program provides training in research methods, procedures, and communication skills.

National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates

Listings of all NSF-funded REU sites with contact information.

Plant Science Research Network Research and Funding Opportunities

This organization provides a list of opportunities for students interested in plant science.

Pathways to Science

Searchable database of science summer research opportunities.

Conferences & Publications

These opportunities are especially relevant for undergraduate researchers.

2019 Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference

Held in Reston, Virginia, June 11-13, 2019. Features green chemists and engineers from all over the world. This year's conference theme is "Closing the Loop" in the chemical life cycle. Early bird registration ends April 30.  

Conference of Undergraduate Research & Scholarship

Hosted at Monmouth College (Monmouth, Illinois) this conference on April 12-13, 2019, welcomes oral and poster presentations by undergraduate students from any discipline. Conference participants are also invited to submit manuscripts for the annual volume of Conference Proceedings. Abstract submission for the conference due February 15.

Midwest Regional SACNAS Conference

SACNAS is the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science. The theme of the 2019 conference, held at the University of Chicago on Saturday, April 6, is "Identity and Inclusion in STEM: Empowering Across Boundaries." The conference features exciting keynote speakers, professional development workshops, student research presentations (oral or poster), and a graduate school recruiting opportunity. Abstracts for research presentation should be submitted by February 15. Registration is open through March 1.

Sigma Xi Annual Meeting and Student Research Conference

This year's theme is Our Changing Global Environment. The conference takes place November 14-17 in Madison, Wisconsin. Proposal submissions for individual research presentations (oral or poster) and other types of session are accepted through February 15.

Fine Focus

Fine Focus is an international, peer-reviewed journal that publishes undergraduate research in all fields of microbiology. Submissions are due September 30 and March 30.

Midwest Journal of Undergraduate Research

This peer-reviewed journal is edited and published by a team of students and faculty at Monmouth College. Manuscripts from students in any discipline are accepted. Additional instructions for authors are available under "Call for Papers" at the linked website. Submission deadline for the 2019 issue is January 15, 2019.

Undergraduate Journal of Service-Learning and Community-Based Research

This journal publishes reflective essays, analytical essays, research done in partnership with community organizations, research articles, and other types of work by undergraduate students. All manuscripts go through a review process.

CUR list of undergraduate research journals

Funding Sources

Aquinas Student Senate Research Fund

The SSRF provides small grants to help Aquinas students conduct research projects and travel to conferences.

CUR Travel Awards

Several divisions of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) offer funding to cover undergraduate student travel to present research at conferences. Aquinas is an institutional member of CUR.

Biology: Up to $250 is available for students presenting original biological research at a regional or national disciplinary meeting. Due dates are September 1, 2018, and January 31, 2019.

Health Sciences: Up to $400 is available for students presenting original research related to the health sciences at the annual NCUR conference. Applications are due February 20, 2019.

Psychology: Travel awards ($200) are available from CUR's psychology division to support undergraduate students presenting original research at a regional or national disciplinary meeting. Faculty mentors must nominate students for these awards. Nominations are due October 15 and February 15 annually.

Physics & Astronomy: Up to $500 is available for support students presenting at professional meetings. Due dates are September 15 and March 15.

Social Sciences: Up to $200 will be granted to students presenting at national or regional meetings. Applications are considered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Sigma Xi Grants-in-Aid of Research Program

Grants of up to $1000 are awarded to students from any area of science and engineering, up to $5000 for astronomy research, and $2500 for vision related research. Funding can be used for travel expenses to and from a research site or for purchase of laboratory equipment. Membership in Sigma Xi is not a requirement. Students from any country are eligible. Learn how to submit the best grant application at the linked site. The two annual deadlines are March 15 and October 1.

Council on Undergraduate Research

Register here and graduate schools may invite you to apply for their programs based on your interests and experience. 
For more information contact Dr. Elizabeth Jensen, or Dr. Michael McDaniel.