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National Science Foundation ( NSF)

Undergraduate Research Assistant

May - August 2019 • Philadelphia, PA

What I liked

Working with the professor, learning really advanced concepts

What I wish was different

I wish the research was more structured!

Advice

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Research Experience for Undergraduates Fellow

June - August 2019 • Orono, ME

What I liked

I was able to use my research and academic knowledge in a new setting which opened my network circle and made me a better scientist.

What I wish was different

Advice

If you are able to do an REU, do one. I would recommend applying to multiple and reapplying if you don't get one. It's an invaluable experience.
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Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Intern

May - July 2019 • Richmond, KY

What I liked

I loved having the opportunity to participate in graduate-level research with great professors at Eastern Kentucky University.

What I wish was different

I wish the internship was longer than 10 weeks.

Advice

REUs are fantastic internships. Apply for as many as you can and spend time on your applications, as they are very competitive.
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Chemistry Research Intern

May - July 2019 • Morgantown, WV

What I liked

There was all lot of team bonding events outside of research and the research itself allowed me to encounter things that I wouldn’t have at my home institution

What I wish was different

I would like it to all be the same.

Advice

It is okay, to make mistakes and be confused about you’re next step just keep trying and thinking then you will eventually get it.
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Undergrad Research

May - July 2019 • Carbondale, IL

What I liked

It was structured and I received a lot of help throughout the program on the research project.

What I wish was different

I wish the program had started after Spring Term at Kalamazoo College ended. I had to leave campus early and take finals at Carbondale, which was really stressful.

Advice

Start your applications early and apply to as many REU programs as possible to get into one of them.
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Undergraduate Researcher

June - August 2019 • Charlotte, NC

What I liked

I enjoyed being able to design and conduct my own independent research on a public health issue in West Charlotte.

What I wish was different

Advice

To do independent research you have to be very self motivated, organized, and driven. However, it is very rewarding and educational.
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Structural Engineering Intern

June 2019 • Buffalo, NY

What I liked

Experiencing new opportunities outside of the classroom.

What I wish was different

I could have done more research before the summer began so I would have had a better idea of the type of work I would be doing.

Advice

It's very new material, so researching and understanding the mechanisms are important.
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Undergraduate Research Assistant

May 2019 • Hartford, CT

What I liked

I got chance to go University of Arizona and did research there for a month, which was an amazing experience.

What I wish was different

Advice

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Undergraduate Researcher

May 2019 • Fayetteville, AR

What I liked

I was able to create my own project and conduct research over ten weeks. I presented the results at a conference and I will be submitting a paper soon as well.

What I wish was different

I wish my project is different, but projects can be discussed with faculty mentors before starting.

Advice

Apply for any National Science Foundations Research Experience for Undergraduates! They're a great experience and wonderful on a resume.
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NSF student researcher

June - August 2019 • Kent, OH

What I liked

It was a good experience to learn about research, graduate school, and working in a lab setting. I got hands on experience with multiple lab machines and had the opportunity to learn about lab techniques.

What I wish was different

I wish I would have liked my research topic a little more.

Advice

Lab work requires a lot of time. Some days I was in the lab from early morning until late at night.
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Polar Researcher

July - August 2019 • Arctic Bay, Nunavut

What I liked

The atmosphere of the trip was learning based and comfortable. Data was collected responsibly and ethically, and all data was shared between groups when requested.

What I wish was different

I wish there had been more time to conduct more research.

Advice

You can learn anything you want to learn if you are dedicated and persistent.
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Mechanical Engineering research intern

June - August 2019 • Princeton, NJ

What I liked

I enjoyed the place, the people and the experience. I learned so much

What I wish was different

I wish I took more advantage of programs offer in the program

Advice

Everyone should take some time to do research, especially with as a group
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Member of the forensic archaeologist exhumation team

June - August 2019 • Leeuwarden, Friesland

What I liked

Hands on experience in my field. Ability to engage with the community and island life. History of our site. Bonding and team camaraderie with fellow coworkers and university professors.

What I wish was different

Nothing, every hiccup or bad experience made the trip a learning experience.

Advice

Network as much as possible. You never know who you’ll meet or what opportunities you’ll be exposed to that could change the course of your entire life.
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Math Research

June - July 2018 • Saint Marys City, MD

What I liked

I loved being thrown into a project and learning along the way. I was given independence, the mentors trusting us in our approaches and how we spent our time. It was also a very broadening and inspiring experience, as all of the mentors were very supportive and truly wanted us to succeed.

What I wish was different

Certain problems of group dynamics made my time there more emotionally taxing than I would've liked, but that wasn't the fault of the program - c'est la vie. They listened to our frustrations every step of the way and took the measures necessary to fix the problems.

Advice

Even if you think getting into an REU is a long shot, or you feel unprepared, it doesn't hurt to take a shot. I'm much better off for it.
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Computer Science Intern

May - August 2018 • Corpus Christi, TX

What I liked

Good pay, good experience.

What I wish was different

The program’s selection of students could have been better.

Advice

Needs more female involvement!
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Intern

May 2018 • Tucson, AZ

What I liked

Gaining meaningful experience.

What I wish was different

More time doing the research.

Advice

Do background research on projects.
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Student Researcher

June - August 2018 • Nairobi, Kenya

What I liked

I really enjoyed learning about a new culture and traveling. It was also my first time doing field work in pastoralist communities.

What I wish was different

Advice

Overall,no matter how much you have or don't have happiness comes from the heart.
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Undergraduate Research Assistant

May - July 2019 • Worcester, MA

What I liked

Lots of new experiences for my first research position. Flexible schedule and great mentors.

What I wish was different

I wish that mentors were available more to answer questions and also understand those undergrad researchers are not well experienced in the field.

Advice

Be ready to work individually more with a mentor guiding you to reach the goal.
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Researcher

June - August 2019 • Menomonie, WI

What I liked

I loved the ability to design my own research project, carry it out, and present it to the public. I enjoyed the level of autonomy I was given and the support I received from mentors.

What I wish was different

Two and a half months is simply not enough time to carry out a research project of this kind. I wish there had been more communication prior to my start date so that I could have done work in advance.

Advice

This experience was completely dependent on your level of excitement about the project. If you enter it with an open mind and willing to learn whatever you can, it will be very fulfilling.
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Cancer Researcher

June - August 2018 • Cleveland, OH

What I liked

I liked working with a biosensor and enjoyed the wet lab experience. I really enjoyed hearing the pros and cons of graduate school. I also enjoyed the flexibility of my schedule and the learning opportunities that the REU program provides.

What I wish was different

Advice

I would suggest participation in an REU program if you want to determine whether graduate research programs are in your future. I would encourage people to participate if they are unsure if it is the right choice for them. It helped me pick a path.
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