Undergraduate students are encouraged to participate in the exciting research led by scholars in the College of IST. Research experience is a great resume builder and an excellent way to extend learning outside of the classroom. Whether considering graduate school, looking for a creative outlet, searching for a thesis project, or wanting to hone critical thinking skills, students will find many interesting projects in our labs, classrooms, and research centers.
Finding Research Opportunities
Finding a research project of interest to you depends on your initiative. Although some students find good research project opportunities through the University's undergraduate research posting system, many find a good fit by taking the time to find out about faculty members' projects and making personal connections during office hours. Explore our research areas to learn about current research projects and faculty working in different areas.
- If you find a faculty member working in an area that interests you, email them your resume, cover letter, and a statement of interest to see if they have opportunities for undergraduate students to support their work.
- If you're unsure if there's a faculty member doing work in an area that interests you, email your resume, cover letter, and a statement of interest to IST's associate dean for research to see what opportunities may be available.
University Support for Undergraduate Research
Additional research opportunities and information for undergraduates are available through the Office of Undergraduate Education.
- Research Opportunity Postings - Explore openings for undergraduate research assistants, searchable by campus and college or faculty name.
- Undergraduate Exhibition - An annual showcase of undergraduate research and creative work from across Penn State’s colleges and campuses, held in the spring at the University Park campus.
- Erickson Discovery Grants - Competitive awards to support undergraduate student engagement in original research, scholarship, or creative work under direct supervision by a faculty member.
- Research Conference Travel Support - Matching funds provided by the Office of Undergraduate Education, colleges and campuses, and academic departments to defray the cost of attendance by undergraduate students at national or regional professional meetings to present their research or creative work.