Our faculty welcomes undergraduate student participation in research, which greatly enhances your educational experience beyond coursework. Opportunities are available during the academic semesters, intersession, and summer through independent study and research courses or through paid research positions.
To find Undergraduate Research opportunities in Mechanical Engineering, contact the faculty directly to ask.
- Visit the Faculty page for a list of our faculty and their research interests. There are links to their lab sites where you can view their research in detail.
- Select a faculty member or two whose work interests you.
- Be prepared to talk about what interests you about their research. On each Faculty member’s “full profile” pages are publications of their recent papers, which you can often look up in the MSE Library. Read a couple papers. While you won’t be expected to know, much less understand everything in the papers, that fact that you took interest and can discuss what you read will impress professors.
- Sometimes, professors would like to see your resume and/or transcript, so keep those handy when you make your first contact.
- Contact the faculty members of interest by e-mail, phone, or in person and express your interest in their research and that you would like to get involved in their research.
The Undergraduate Academic Advising Manual describes undergraduate research opportunities.
- Sections 1.2.6-1.2.9 discusses general research information, and pre-research course requirements in laboratory safety and responsible conduct of research.
- Section 2 – General Regulations – has a section that describes independent research and independent study for credit.
- Your advisor must pre-approve your doing research for credit.
- To count the independent research or independent study toward an elective section of the BS Mechanical Engineering or BS Engineering Mechanics degrees, the work must be at the rigor and vigor of upper-undergraduate (junior or senior) work or higher.
- A 3.0 cumulative GPA or higher is strongly recommended before doing independent research.
- Generally, 40 hours of research work = 1 credit.
- Students must register in the first six weeks of the semester to earn independent research or study credit that semester. The University prohibits retroactive registration.
- Students taking three or more credits of undergraduate research are encouraged to present a research poster at the University’s Day of Undergraduate Research (DREAMS), which happens in the spring of each year. Visit the link for details on the event and how to submit your poster.
ForagerOne assists undergraduate students in finding and contacting the right faculty mentors through a database of faculty profiles and a guided application process. Students can also find specific open projects that faculty are recruiting for and apply directly to join them.
The department receives information on all kinds of Research Experiences for Undergrads (REUs) and Summer Research opportunities from universities all over the United States and beyond. Watch your e-mail for those opportunities.