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Program for Undergraduate Research Experiences (PURE) for Undergraduates

Undergraduate Research Funding

HES Program for Undergraduate Research Experiences (PURE) aims to encourage and support undergraduate participation in research projects across the college. PURE provides opportunities for exceptional students to cooperate actively with faculty mentors, learning firsthand about multiple dimensions of research, creative activity, and scholarship processes.

We consider the first four years of this program to have been a great success. We have provided funding to more than 40 undergraduate applicants, representing Nutrition & Exercise Physiology, Human Development & Family Science, Architectural Studies, and Textiles and Apparel Management. Some students have had posters or papers from their work accepted at regional and national conferences.

HES PURE winners

Students majoring in any HES unit, and with a minimum of 50 hours of completed coursework and a 3.25 GPA, are eligible to apply for a PURE mentorship for the Summer Session of 2016, Fall Semester 2016, Spring Semester 2017, and or combined Fall 2016/Spring 2017 period. Students must apply in partnership with faculty mentors in their major department and are expected to (1) devote 160 hours over the course of a semester to the research internship, and (2) prepare two products: (a) research poster, talk or other final product for either on-campus or off-campus presentation, and (b) written account of approximately 500 words for publication of a report on research mentorships.

The total pay for the experience is $2,000; three-quarters of these funds are provided by PURE and the other quarter is provided by the mentor’s unit, research grant, or other source identified by the mentor. Funds will be used exclusively to support the undergraduate research experiences. HES-PURE is administered by the Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies and advised by a faculty committee.

For 2016-2017, we will have a single deadline of March 24, 2016, with notification of accepted applications expected by April 12, 2016. We anticipate being able to fund up to 8 students. Application instructions, application cover sheet, and guidelines on faculty mentor roles are attached to this message.

We hope this program continues to prove successful for HES, and I would be happy to visit with anyone about HES-PURE. Thanks! Dr. Sandy Rikoon, Interim Dean

View Past Recipients

Faculty Mentor Information

Faculty members who agree to participate in this program have the opportunity to involve some of our most talented undergraduates in their personal research and creative activities. Such involvement will, of course, assume different shapes according to the individual demands of the discipline, the specialty, the individual mentor, and the particular project.

The faculty mentor and student should meet throughout the project timeline to discuss challenges and assess progress. For a summer mentorship, regular and frequent meetings are suggested — biweekly for at least an hour over the course of eight weeks. For an academic semester mentorship, weekly meetings of at least an hour would be acceptable. Of course, the faculty mentor and student are in the best position to determine the length and frequency of meetings appropriate to the discipline and to the specific research project. The core activity that this program seeks to foster is a partnership that allows the undergraduate an inside look at the process of research/creative achievement that lies at the foundation of academic life.

Participating faculty mentors are encouraged to engage students directly in their research — not just to employ them as assistants. Accordingly, the Dean’s office believes it is crucial to acknowledge the student fully (as co-author, associate investigator, or in some other appropriate capacity) in any publication or public presentation that results from the project and reports an activity in which the student has made a professional contribution.

Faculty mentors may assist the applicant in preparation of their application. Further, a letter of support from the faculty mentor is required, to be sent directly by the faculty mentor to the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies, 118 Gwynn Hall, by the application deadline of March 24, 2016. This letter should include identification of the source of funding for the quarter of the student stipend that will be provided through the mentor (see below). The mentor’s departmental chair should also endorse this letter.

The total pay for the undergraduate participant is $2,000; three-quarters of these funds are provided by PURE and the other quarter is provided by the mentor’s unit or another source identified by the mentor. The Associate Dean’s Office will also provide up to $250 in additional travel expenses for the student for an off-campus presentation of the research results.