Student Research at Aquinas College

Research Opportunities


Programs & Experiences

Looking for a summer undergraduate research experience? The peak period for notices of this type of program is between December and March.

Naval Research Enterprise Internships

This program provides undergraduate students with opportunities to participate in research at a Department of Navy laboratory for ten weeks during the summer. Applicants must be U.S. Citizens and must be pursuing majors that align with the laboratory. All interns receive a stipend of at least $7000. Applications are due November 1.

Cato Institute Internships

Undergraduates studying policy, communications, or law are invited to apply for an internship during fall semester, spring semester, or summer. Interns are paid a stipend of $1000 per month to work at the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C. Applications are due June 27 (fall), November 1 (spring), and February 15 (summer).

NASA Internships

Undergraduate students interested in NASA-related research topics should apply for these internships, held at various NASA sites. Interns are assigned to a career professional mentor while working for 16 weeks (10 weeks in summer) on tasks that contribute to operations or missions. Applicants must be U.S. Citizens with at least 3.0 GPA. Interns receive a stipend. Applications are due July 1 (fall), November 5 (spring), or March 8 (summer).

ORISE Scholarship Competition

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) is hosting a problem-based challenge for undergraduate students. Students will develop an infographic to communicate levels of autonomous driving and sensor packages. Winners will receive $5000, $3000, or $1000 scholarships. Submissions are due December 6.

Pediatric Oncology Education Program St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

The POE Program provides a unique opportunity for students preparing for careers in biomedical sciences, medicine, and pharmacy to gain biomedical and oncology research experience. Participants must be U.S. citizens, non-citizen nationals, or permanent residents, must have GPA at least 3.40 in math and science courses. The program lasts for 10 or 11 weeks during the summer of 2020. Undergraduates will receive a stipend of $400/week. Housing is provided at no cost. Applications due February 1, 2020, but early applications are recommended.

Pierce Cedar Creek Institute 2020 Grants and Fellowships

PCCI is located near Hastings, Michigan. A variety of research grants and fellowships for undergraduate students are offered for summer 2020 including Environmental Research Grants (up to $13000; pre-application due November 20, 2019), the Steeby Land Management Fellowship ($4500), the Gordon Art Fellowship ($8000), and the Nature in Words Fellowship ($8000). All applications are due February 6, 2020.

Institute for Women's Policy Research Internship Program

The IWPR, located in Washington, D.C., offers this internship program to train undergraduates in fundamentals of the non-profit sector and grow in policy research skills. Internships are available in Research or Accounting and Operations areas. These are paid internships with flexible time commitments, although they typically last one semester. International students and college students of all levels are encouraged to apply. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Texas Historical Commission

Various unpaid internships are available each year to provide undergraduate students experience in historic preservation careers. Applications are due May 1 (summer), September 1 (fall), and January 1 (spring).

Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internships (SULI) with U.S. Department of Energy

This program encourages undergraduate students to pursue careers in STEM fields. Selected students work at one of the 17 participating national laboratories around the United States, performing research under the guidance of staff scientists and engineers. Appointments are for 10 weeks in fall (August to December), spring (January to May), or summer (May to August). Participants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and will receive $500/week stipend, housing, and travel support. Applications are due late May for the fall term, in early January for summer term, and in early October for the spring term.

Higher Education Research Experiences (HERE) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory

The HERE program provides research opportunities for undergraduate students at various academic levels. Participate in cutting-edge projects, collaborate with prestigious international experts, develop solutions to pressing national problems. Those selected will also receive $500/week stipend and a housing allowance. Applications are accepted year-round, but apply by October 1 (spring), February 1 (summer), or June 1 (fall) for the best chance of a suitable placement in your preferred term. You must be 18 years or older, have medical insurance, and have a cumulative GPA of 2.5.

Professional Internship Program at NETL

This program of the National Energy Technology Laboratory is designed to introduce students to the challenges of conducting energy research. Participants interact with assigned mentors who guide their research activities. Applications are always accepted; for best results apply by February 15 for summer, June 1 for fall, and October 1 for spring appointments.

Geoscience Policy Internship

Outstanding geoscience or geo-related engineering students with a strong interest in federal science policy are invited to apply for this semester- or summer-length internship with the American Geosciences Institute. Fall term (September through December), Spring term (January through April), and summer term (May through August) positions are available. Applicants must be legally eligible to work in the United States. Interns are paid a stipend. Applications are due April 15 for Fall, October 15 for Spring, and March 1 for Summer.

Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

Research internships are available in a variety of fields related to environmental issues. Participants receive $550/week. Applications are due February 15 for summer projects (May-August), November 15 for winter/spring (January-April), and June 1 for fall (September-December). 

Oak Ridge Environmental Management Science Education and Internship Program

Offers undergraduate students and recent graduates opportunities to receive specialized training and practical experience on the safe cleanup of environmental projects. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Amway Internships

Search the Amway Careers site for internship opportunities available to undergraduates. Opportunities span many different disciplines and are offered year-round.

Aquinas Summer Scholars Grants

The proposal phase for 2020 will open in January. This program provides an opportunity for student-faculty pairs to pursue a collaborative project during the summer break. Projects may come from any academic discipline. The program includes a stipend of $1500 for the student and $1000 for the faculty mentor of each team. Requirements include a written report at the end of the summer and presentation of the results of the project during the Student Research Symposium next spring. The application form is available from the Flannery Hall reception desk. Questions may be directed to Dr. Elizabeth Jensen (UGResearch@aquinas.edu). The Writing Center staff is eager to assist you with your proposal.

Mohler-Thompson Summer Research Grants

Aquinas undergraduate students interested in participating in science or math research during the summer should contact any science or math faculty member to find out what projects are available and how to apply. Selection of students takes place between November and February.

Student Internship Program at Van Andel Research Institute

Summer interns work with closely with a Van Andel scientist for 10 weeks. The program provides training in research methods, procedures, and communication skills.

National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates

Listings of all NSF-funded REU sites with contact information.

Plant Science Research Network Research and Funding Opportunities

This organization provides a list of opportunities for students interested in plant science.

Pathways to Science

Searchable database of science summer research opportunities.


Conferences & Publications

These opportunities are especially relevant for undergraduate researchers.

National Conference on Undergraduate Research

NCUR2020 will be hosted at Montana State University March 26-28, 2020. This national conference is open to undergraduate student researchers from every discipline. Abstracts are due December 6.

Society for Applied Anthropology Annual Meeting

Meeting theme "Cultural History and Diversity in Complex Societies." Taking place in Albuquerque March 17-21, 2020. Currently accepting abstracts for poster presentations through October 15.

American Historical Association Annual Meeting

The AHA hosts an undergraduate poster session at the annual meeting in New York, January 3-6, 2020. Poster submissions by individual students or groups of students are due October 15, 2019. Additionally, undergraduate students are invited to participate in the Lightning Round (three-minute presentations). Students must apply separately for the Lightning Round (due November 15) and Poster Session, but may participate in both.

Popular Culture Association National Conference

Conference takes place in Philadelphia April 15-20, 2020. Undergraduate students require a faculty sponsor to present posters at the conference. Poster abstracts are due November 1.

Wilson College Humanities Conference "Bold Women"

This conference, held February 29, 2020, will be hosted at Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. Undergraduate students must submit a letter of support from a current faculty member at their institution along with their conference abstract. Abstracts are due January 15, 2020.

Fine Focus

Fine Focus is an international, peer-reviewed journal that publishes undergraduate research in all fields of microbiology. Submissions are due September 30 and March 30.

Midwest Journal of Undergraduate Research

This peer-reviewed journal is edited and published by a team of students and faculty at Monmouth College. Manuscripts from students in any discipline are accepted. Additional instructions for authors are available under "Call for Papers" at the linked website.

Undergraduate Journal of Service-Learning and Community-Based Research

This journal publishes reflective essays, analytical essays, research done in partnership with community organizations, research articles, and other types of work by undergraduate students. All manuscripts go through a review process.

CUR list of undergraduate research journals


Funding Sources

Aquinas Student Senate Research Fund

The SSRF provides small grants to help Aquinas students conduct research projects and travel to conferences.

CUR Travel Awards

Several divisions of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) offer funding to cover undergraduate student travel to present research at conferences. Aquinas is an institutional member of CUR.

Biology: Up to $250 is available for students presenting original biological research at a regional or national disciplinary meeting. Due dates are September and January.

Health Sciences: Up to $400 is available for students presenting original research related to the health sciences at the annual NCUR conference. Applications are due February.

Psychology: Travel awards ($200) are available from CUR's psychology division to support undergraduate students presenting original research at a regional or national disciplinary meeting. Faculty mentors must nominate students for these awards. Nominations are due October 15 and March 15 annually.

Physics & Astronomy: Up to $500 is available for support students presenting at professional meetings. Due dates are September 15 and April 19.

Social Sciences: Up to $200 will be granted to students presenting at national or regional meetings. Applications are considered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Sigma Xi Grants-in-Aid of Research Program

Grants of up to $1000 are awarded to students from any area of science and engineering, up to $5000 for astronomy research, and $2500 for vision related research. Funding can be used for travel expenses to and from a research site or for purchase of laboratory equipment. Membership in Sigma Xi is not a requirement. Students from any country are eligible. Learn how to submit the best grant application at the linked site. The two annual deadlines are March 15 and October 1.

ACM-W Scholarships for Attendance at Research Conferences

ACM-W provides funding for women undergraduate students in Computer Science and related disciplines to attend research conferences. The student does not need to be presenting a paper at the conference to receive support. Scholarship applications are reviewed six times a year for up to $600 ($1200 for intercontinental conferences). Certain ACM special interest group conferences will also provide free registration and a conference mentor.

Council on Undergraduate Research

Register here and graduate schools may invite you to apply for their programs based on your interests and experience. 
For more information contact Dr. Elizabeth Jensen, or Dr. Michael McDaniel.