Undergraduate Research

Summer Grants

In an effort to encourage and support the involvement of undergraduate students in a research experience, the Research, Scholarship and Creative Activities program encourages faculty mentors to participate in the SUNY New Paltz Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE). The focus of this research program is to encourage student participation in faculty-mentored research, scholarship, or creative activities that generate new knowledge or works. The application and related information can be found below in the call for proposals. Previous proposals and criteria for evaluation are available at the bottom of this page.

Faculty mentors will direct and provide guidance to participating students as they work on a particular aspect of the faculty’s research program. The Safety Supplemental Stipend has been established to recognize the significant time commitment of faculty mentors to issues of student safety that is required for some projects (see the call for proposals). As a goal of this program is to encourage ongoing faculty-student collaboration, graduating seniors are given low priority in the funding decision. Students will receive funding to work full time on the project over the eight-week summer period. Early in the subsequent fall semester, all SURE students are required to present the results of their work. The date and format of the presentations will be determined. Student participants are also encouraged to present their work at appropriate regional and national meetings.

SURE students will meet with their faculty mentors regularly during the award period to discuss the progress and problems that may evolve during the course of the research engagement. This interaction will allow students the opportunity to gain experience in communicating their plans and questions involved with their project. Additionally, students will attend workshops on writing and presentation of research results.

SURE students commit to:

  • 8 weeks of work (300 hours) on the project
  • provide assessment information 
  • attend orientation on common exam day

» Download the SURE 2020 Call for Proposals

Due Wednesday, April 15, 2020.

» SURE 2020 Call for Proposals(Word)SURE Proposal Evaluation
» Download a laboratory science example proposal (Word)
» Download a social science example proposal (Word)
» Download another social science example proposal (Word)
» Download a Humanities example proposal from 2017(pdf)

Special opportunity for first-year students

The RSCA program provides a funding opportunity for first-year undergraduate researchers. The Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program supports an undergraduate and faculty mentor in the pursuit of a research or creative project. Due to the level of experience generally required for such a project, SURE funds are typically awarded to more advanced students. To provide first year students with research experience opportunities, we will offer a supplementary SURE award. This award will support a rising sophomore who will work with a faculty mentor and upper-class SURE student. This second SURE student will receive funding for 300 hours of work, and the mentor a supplementary stipend of $300. The supplementary award is not a stand alone award; it must be associated with a funded SURE project.

Supplemental SURE proposals will be submitted with a SURE proposal. If the SURE proposal is funded, the supplemental proposal will be considered. The supplemental proposal format is described below.   It is expected that supplemental project will be a project that parallels or is a sub-project of the SURE project. The project should expose the student to work that is appropriate for the discipline and should contribute to the intellectual development of the student.

» Download the SURE supplemental application (Word)

Students who have participated in the SURE and AYURE programs will be invited to apply for the Undergraduate Research Experience Travel Award (URETA). This award supports attendance at a professional conference to present the faculty-mentored research results. Attendance at professional conference will continue the research experience by enabling the student to participate in the professional environment of sharing knowledge and creative projects. See the Conference Travel Funds page to find the URETA application and information.

Congratulations to all 2020 Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) award recipients!

See the list below for student names, mentors and titles to the SURE 2020 projects: 


Hanaa Ahmed, Biology (Chemistry & Disaster Studies), ‘22
Mentor:  Maureen Morrow, Biology
Characterization of a Soil Bacterium Subject to Warming Conditions
Hollie Burton, Geography (environmental concentration), ‘21
Mentor:  Melissa Yang Rock, Geography
Newburgh Water Contamination: Risk and Uncertainty over PFOS Exposure
Kieran Cavanagh, Mechanical Engineering/Mathematics, ‘21
Mentor:  Ping-Chuan Wang, Mechanical Engineering
Modeling of Electromigration Process in Al(Cu) IC Interconnect
Nicole Elyukin, Psychology (Spanish), ‘20
Mentor: Tabitha R. Holmes, Psychology
Self-Presentation on Finsta vs. Insta
Lissa Elzey, Biology - Organismal, ‘22
Mentor: David Richardson, Biology
Ecosystem changes in an acidic lake on the Shawangunk Ridge
Brett Hanson, Mechanical Engineering (Applied Math), ‘22
Mentor: Rachmadian Wulandana, Mechanical Engineering
Flow Characteristics of Turbines in Tandem – A Computer Model Study
Ryan Mansell, Biology & Biochemistry, ‘21
Mentor: Lydia Bright, Biology
Computational Analysis of Proteins Involved in Holospora in Infection of Paramecium Cells
Caitlin McGetrick, English & Graphic Design, ‘23
Mentor: Amy Papelias, Art
Girl Culture: The Typography of Teen Magazines
Honor Montmarquet, Sociology & Women’s Gender & Sexuality Studies, ‘21
Mentor:  Karl Bryant, Sociology and Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies
Trans and Nonbinary College Students’ Experiences of Housing Insecurity
Adam Mulla, Adolescence Ed. Physics, ‘21
Mentor:  Catherine Herne, Physics & Astronomy
Analysis of Calcite Rotational Motion
Sarah Pallone, Psychology, ‘21
Mentor: Corwin Senko, Psychology
A Meta-Analysis of Achievement Goal Experiments
Liam Salisbury, Geography (planning concentration), ‘21
Mentor: Melissa Yank Rock, Geography
Newburgh Water Contamination: Risk and Uncertainty over PFOS Exposure
Aksa Sam, Physics & Astronomy, ‘23                                                          Mentor:  Catherine Herne, Physics & Astronomy                                          Analysis of Calcite Rotational Motion
Allison Seyler, Geology & Spanish, ‘21                                                      Mentor:  Gordana Garapic, Geology                                                            Rift Initiation in Fertile Mantle Lithosphere  
Christina Signoretti, Biochemistry (Music), ‘20
Mentor: Dominic McBrayer, Chemistry
Prediction of peptide electron ionization mass spec. "fingerprints"
Nathaniel Swartz, Geography, ’21
Mentor:  Huicheng Chien, Geography
Analyzing Spatiotemporal Development of COVID-19 in New York State
Ian Silverstein, Visual Arts, ‘21
Mentor: Keely Heuer, Art History
Documenting Desire: Archaeological Evidence of Pederasty in Ancient Italy
Cara Whitehorne, Art History, ‘21
Mentor: Keely Heuer, Art History
Representation Matters: Non-Royal Women in Ancient Egyptian Art
Cassandra Williams, Mathematics/Computer Science, ‘21
Mentor: Anca Radulescu, Mathematics
Using data-driven dynamic networks to model the course of the COVID 19 outbreak


To learn more about their projects, please visit the 2020 SURE Symposium: https://sunynewpaltzrsca.wordpress.com/