Research Opportunities

Why should I participate in undergraduate research?

The Louis Stokes North Star STEM Alliance encourages all undergraduates to consider participating in undergraduate research. Hands-on research puts theory into practice as you work directly with faculty and graduate students on projects at the cutting-edge of science.

How do I get involved in research?

There are a variety of ways to find research opportunities. A place to start is by talking with a faculty member. They can direct you to information on your campus. Many campuses have Undergraduate Research Opportunities Programs (UROP).  Smaller institutions often have faculty engaged in both teaching and research projects. Talk with them about what opportunities exist on campus.

Below you will find a list of many general and summer undergraduate research experience (REU) opportunities along with application deadlines.

LS-NSSA Research Programs

General Research Opportunities at The University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program: UROP provides all University of Minnesota undergraduates, regardless of college, major or discipline, the opportunity to partner with a faculty member on a research, scholarly or creative project. UROP gives students a chance to explore academic and career interests, apply classroom learning to real-time research and prepare for a career or graduate school while working closely with a faculty member. Students may work on a project of their own creation or take part in a faculty member’s existing project. Application Deadline: There are no application deadlines for this program. Learn more about the UROP presentation dates and deadlines by clicking the link.

The International Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program: The I-UROP Scholarship is designed to promote learning abroad opportunities to UMTC undergraduate students by providing critical funding to students enrolled in select credit-bearing learning abroad programs involving a research project. The learning abroad program must be a semester or academic year in length involving a minimum of 100 hours dedicated to research that occurs onsite. Application Deadline: May 5, 2021.

MN Futures Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program: The MN Futures UROP provides opportunities for undergraduates to partner with a cross-disciplinary team of faculty members on one of the MN Futures research grants.  Application Deadline: There are no application deadlines for this program. Learn more about the GC UROP presentation dates and deadlines by clicking the link.

Undergraduate Research Scholarships: The undergraduate research scholarship (URS) provides first and second-year students scholarship funding for participating in the research and creative work with faculty. Undergraduate Research Scholarships (URS) are awarded by the University Admissions Office to prospective freshman as part of the admissions award package. 

Summer Research Opportunities at The University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

The McNair Scholars Program: The goal of McNair Scholars is to give undergraduate students intensive, faculty-driven research experiences and prepare students for entry into and success in graduate school. Students pursuing STEM programs are strongly encouraged to apply.  Application Deadline: February 2, 2021.

*Note -- if your institution does not have a McNair Scholars program, you can apply to the one at the University of Minnesota.

For more information, visit:

ATP-BIO Research Experience for Undergraduate Students

ATP-Bio is a large NSF funded Engineering Research Center housed at the University of Minnesota. In addition to the scientific focus on the development of cryogenic cooling applications, ATP-Bio is developing STEM pathways to promote diversity in the STEM fields including partnerships with community colleges.

ATP-Bio would like to meet with you to discuss potential programming development for community college students and faculty, for example bridging programs for students transferring to the University of Minnesota and professional development opportunities for faculty. The goal is for this programming to build on the strengths of existing programs and partnerships, as well as being responsive to the specific needs of community colleges. Please contact Stephanie Schroeder ( to learn more about ATP-Bio and schedule a meeting to help shape the development of ATP-Bio support for community college students and faculty.

In addition, ATP-Bio supports early research experiences for students through an REU program (Research Experience for Undergraduates). The ATP-Bio REU is a 10-week research internship targeting students nationwide, including community college students, who have not participated in prior research. Students will spend their summer doing cutting edge research as they help advance cryopreservation technologies. Housing, lodging, and a stipend are provided and students will conduct research at either the University of Minnesota or Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, MA. Applications will open in January 2022.

Life Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Program: LSSURP has given students that have been underrepresented in the life sciences the experience and training that enhances their ability to pursue a career in research. This represents a long-standing commitment to increasing the impact and quality of life science research at the University of Minnesota, which is strengthened when there is diversity in our faculty and students. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology Research Experience for Undergraduates: The Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology, through support from the National Science Foundation, hosts a Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program focused on Sustainable Nanotechnology. Selected participants will spend 10 weeks conducting research in collaboration with one more principal investigators of the Center for Sustainable Nanotechnology. Application Deadline: TBA

Research Experience for Undergraduates Program in Physics and Astrophysics: Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) is a 10-week summer outreach program that provides a working research environment for undergraduate students. Participants engage in research with faculty and staff of the School of Physics and Astronomy. Application Deadline: TBA

The Multicultural Summer Research Opportunities Program: MSROP at the University of Minnesota provides underrepresented undergraduates an opportunity to develop research skills and prepare for research-based graduate programs during an intensive 10-week summer program. Application Deadline: TBA.

Cancer Disparities Internship: The University of Minnesota Medical School Program in Health Disparities Research, in collaboration with the Masonic Cancer Center, invites eligible undergraduate students to submit an application for the 11th Annual Health Disparities & Cancer Research Summer Internship. This program is a paid, full-time internship designed to give undergraduate students from Minnesota's racial/ethnic minority and underrepresented communities experience conducting cancer and/or health disparities research. The program also provides students opportunities to shadow clinicians at hospitals and clinics in the Twin Cities. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

CSP Summer Undergraduate Research Program: The CSP will provide up to 13 full-time research positions to undergraduate students during the summer of 2019. Positions may be available at the University of Minnesota, the University of California–Berkeley, Northwestern University, Cornell University, the University of Chicago, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of South Dakota. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

The Pathways to Research Program: PReP provides an opportunity for students from populations underrepresented in research to begin or advance their research career. Opportunities for travel funds to participate in national and international scientific meetings are awarded on a competitive basis. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

Summer Lando/NSF REU: Our Summer Lando/NSF REU is for outstanding national and international undergraduate students. It is designed to encourage students in the chemical sciences to learn more about research in chemistry, and provide them with the opportunity to work in a lab under the direction of a faculty member. We offer a variety of professional and social events for participants throughout the summer. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

The Lillehei Heart Institute - Summer Research Program: The LHI SRSP offers annual summer research scholarships in basic science research related to cardiovascular disease. These highly competitive, prestigious scholarships are designed to expose highly qualified students to several disciplines within cardiovascular disease research and its clinical applications. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

The NCED Research Experience for Undergraduates on Sustainable Land and Water Resources: The program is open to undergraduate students majoring in civil engineering, geosciences, ecology, mathematics, or related fields. We encourage applications from students of all genders who are Native American, tribal college students, community college students, non-traditional students, veterans, students who have been historically under-represented in their discipline and students who are first-generation college students. Application Deadline: February 15, 2021.

The Summer Undergraduate Minority Mentoring and Internship Training program: SUMMIT is a research learning opportunity for minority and underrepresented groups in the Plant Sciences. SUMMIT’s goal is to mentor undergraduate students to prepare them for a career in the sciences. Application Deadline: February 26, 2021.

Minnesota’s Discovery, Research, and InnoVation Economy: MnDRIVE is a partnership between the University of Minnesota and the State of Minnesota that aligns areas of research strength with the state’s key and emerging industries to address grand challenge. Via a collaboration between the North Star STEM Alliance and MnDRIVE, our students may participate in paid research internships with MnDRIVE researchers. MnDRIVE is a Minnesota’s Discovery, Research, and InnoVation Economy, a partnership between the University of Minnesota and the State of Minnesota that aligns areas of research strength with the state’s key and emerging industries to address grand challenges. North Star students may apply for research in one of 31 research topics within four areas: Robotics, Global Food, Environment, and Brain Conditions. Application Deadline: February 25, 2021.

Summer Research Opportunities at Other Institutions

Augsburg University's Undergraduate Research and Graduate Opportunity (URGO): The Office of Undergraduate Research and Graduate Opportunity (URGO) connects students with both new and existing research and scholarship on campus, across the U.S., and internationally. Each summer over 30 Augsburg students participate in URGO’s 11-week research program on campus, while others pursue research opportunities off campus at institutions such as Harvard, Mayo Clinic, and the University of Minnesota. 

Center for Aerosol Impacts on Chemistry of the Environment Summer: The Center for Aerosol Impacts on Chemistry of the Environment (CAICE) focuses on improving our understanding of how aerosol particles influences the environment, air quality, and climate. Students have the chance to choose from CAICE labs located across the U.S. where they can conduct exciting hands-on scientific research, receive graduate school preparation, and attend field trips. Application Deadline:  TBA.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates at UC Irvine: IoT-SITY REU Site will annually host 9-10 students from across the nation to conduct research during the summer with faculty mentors on topics related to IoT for Smart Communities. Participants will investigate exciting applications and explore ways in which we can reliably and safely apply and deploy IoT systems to develop the Smart and Connected Communities of the future. Application Deadline: February 1, 2021.

Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURE) @ The University of Wisconsin-Madison: With the College of Engineering at the University of Wisconsin, participants will spend 10 weeks conducting laboratory research in an area of engineering or the physical sciences. Students are exposed to other research available on campus through weekly meetings and faculty seminars, and participate in social activities with current graduate students. At the conclusion of the program, students submit their research paper and present their research in an interdisciplinary poster session. Application Deadline: TBA.

Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURE) @ Georgia Tech: This program is for rising juniors and rising seniors from any U.S. based college of university (who will not have graduated by May 2019) in a computing, engineering, science, or other technology major. Application Deadline: February 28, 2021.

The NSF Engineering Research Center for Cell Manufacturing Technologies (CMaT): The REU program will fund undergraduate students to work in CMaT labs at Georgia Institute of Technology (GT), University of Georgia (UGA), University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez (UPRM), and University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW). Must be currently enrolled in a science or engineering undergraduate program (biology, chemistry, physics, materials science, bio-engineering, computer science, and related fields). Application Deadline: TBA.

NSF - Interdisciplinary Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program in Nanotechnology and Biomedicine: The University of Georgia focuses on hands-on and interdisciplinary research experience at the interface of nanotechnology and biomedicine. More than 30 faculty participants from the College of Engineering, College of Arts and Science, and Medical School inspire students by creating an atmosphere of collaboration and creativity. Students will participate in interdisciplinary research projects that apply nanotechnology to specific biomedical problems. Each REU student will be co-mentored by paired faculty from the nanotechnology and biomedical disciplines on a collaborative research project. Application Deadline: February 14, 2021.

The Amgen Scholars Program: National program to increase research opportunities for students committed to pursuing careers in the sciences. Application Deadline: TBA (canceled for Spring 2021).

Interactive Biomaterials REU Program: Collaborative research on the campuses of Syracuse University, Upstate Medical University and SUNY ESF for students majoring in science or engineering. Application Deadline: TBA.

Syracuse University Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) Research Program: This is a paid summer research opportunity that provides undergraduate scholars with the opportunity to work with distinguished faculty and staff as well as network with others in their field of interest. Through this program, scholars will gain theoretical knowledge and practical training in academic research and scientific experimentation. Application Deadline: TBA.

National Laboratories

Explore for internships and research funding opportunities. Some programs are for the summer only, but there are also semester and year-round options.

Federally Funded REU Options

  • NSF has a directory of Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) available. Students should go to this link and then apply directly to the REU Site, not to NSF.
  • Pathways to Science. Over 800 programs (including oceans sciences and engineering) – REU, NASA and other paid summer research opportunities for undergrads available through Pathways to Science. Also, resources on graduate school, webinars for community college students transferring to four year institutions, and more.
  • 2019 Nebraska Summer Research Program offers research opportunities in Applied Mathematics, Biochemistry, Bioenergy Systems, Biomedical Engineering, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, Microbiology, Minority Health Disparities, Nanotechnology, Optics and Laser Physics, Redox Biology, and Virology.

Summer Research at NIH

Regional Opportunity

Internship Opportunity

  • Urban Scholars Leadership and Professional Development Program: Urban Scholars is a leadership and professional development internship program providing students from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds with distinctive professional experience. Focused on essential leadership skills and creating resume-building career pathways, Urban Scholars is training the next generation of leaders. Application Deadline: February 28, 2021.