Approach to Undergraduate Training
CNMB basic philosophy is to have Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) students work on research projects, which are simple to comprehend and have some short-term achievable milestones, but simultaneously contribute to longer-term scientific goals and technological applications. These projects should not only be challenging but engaging to our REU participants so that they are motivated to learn more about the research area as well to seriously consider graduate studies. Our teaming arrangement with faculty and graduate students, giving poster and oral presentations, writing a research-style paper, and attending training seminars in scientific communications and ethics have helped past REU students see the “big picture” of what it takes to develop into a “research scientist” with the critical skills needed for analyzing, interpreting and presenting scientific data. Lastly, most of the research projects have been a strong interdisciplinary flavor, lying at the interfaces of physics, chemistry, materials science, and biomedical engineering
The UAB National Science Foundation – Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) “Regional Initiative to Promote Undergraduate Participation in Experimental and Computational Materials Research”
The NSF REU program provides a 10-week, hands-on research experience for undergraduate students. During the 10-week period, participants will work in the labs of some of UAB’s renown scientists. The research represents actual projects that will contribute, in some way, to the work already being conducted in the labs.
In the video, REU Program Director, Dr. Yogesh K. Vohra discusses the objective of the REU Program, followed by 2013 REU Robert Reeves (pictured), explaining his research project and how it fit into the overall scheme of existing work being conducted in the lab.
One of the most often asked questions that we get is “how are mentors selected?” We are proud to say that our REU participants play an active role in selecting their own project/mentor. On the second day of the program, faculty mentors will make Power Point presentations about their available research projects. We ask participants to select 3 projects for which they are most interested. Participants then meet with the top 3 faculty of choice and from there, a mutual decision will be made as to which project you will be assigned.
The program is open only to United States Citizens and permanent residents of the United States that are currently enrolled in an institute of higher education and who will not be graduating prior to the Spring semester of the program year. In other words, applicants must be returning to an undergraduate program after participating in the program. The REU program will pay a $5,000 stipend for the ten-week period, plus additional support for travel, housing, and other expenses.
- Dr. Yogesh K. Vohra
Director, REU Program
- Charita H. Cadenhead
(205) 975-8009 (Fax)
Department of Physics
University of Alabama at Birmingham