Undergraduate Research

Summer Grants

The Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activities (RSCA) office offers the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) grant. This grant supports faculty-mentored undergraduate student scholarship during an 8-week summer period.


SURE Program Funding

  • Funding of up to $1,000 for supplies, participant payments, etc. to carry out the project.
  • A stipend of approximately $3,500 (hourly rate) to the student.
  • A stipend of $1,200 to the faculty mentor.
  • SURE awardees are eligible to later apply for travel funds to present their work at a conference, pending campus/state permission to travel. Students are eligible for up to $1000 in travel support, and faculty mentors for up to $600.


Supplemental Funding for First-Year Students

SURE grants are typically awarded only to advanced students, due to the level of experience required to conduct a SURE project. Yet we also wish to also provide opportunities to less advanced students. Participating in a project may position them to develop a fruitful long-term collaboration with the faculty mentor or prepare them for later grant opportunities.

Therefore, we offer a supplemental SURE award to a rising sophomore who works on the project with the faculty mentor and upperclass SURE student. This supplemental SURE award provides up to $3,400 stipend (hourly rate) for 300 hours of work, and an additional $300 stipend to the mentor. The award is not a stand-alone award; it must be associated with a funded SURE project. See the application below for details and expectations.



These competitive grants are open to all full-time faculty and their undergraduate mentees. We welcome applications from all academic divisions on campus (Fine & Performing Arts, Liberal Arts & Sciences, Library, School of Business, School of Education, School of Science & Engineering).


We adopt a broad, inclusive definition of "research" and accept numerous types of projects. Some are faculty-driven projects in which the student learns valuable skills while helping to advance the mentor’s scholarship. Others are student-driven projects in which the faculty mentor guides a student eager to chase a budding interest. 

Some are conventional scholarship, where the aim is to create new knowledge or creative works. Others are apprenticeships, where the aim is to train the student on the discipline’s core skills, such as how to use state-of-the-art equipment or how to play an unusual musical instrument. Still others are applied projects, where the aim is to assist a campus or community group by, for example, providing a consultative service.

Whatever its form, the main eligibility criteria are:

  • Through one-on-one training from the faculty expert, the project extends the student’s learning and professional development beyond what is possible in the classroom.
  • Projects are also intensive, taking the 8-week summer period (or longer) to complete. Mentors should meet regularly each week with their student to discuss progress and problems that arise during the semester.
  • The student is involved at a high level in multiple phases of the project.

Most projects involve only one faculty mentor and one student. But we have occasionally supported larger projects with two faculty mentors and/or two students.



SURE 2021 Application Materials


Samples of Prior Proposals (pdfs)

*These samples use discontinued proposal forms. None should be viewed as a flawless model to imitate. Rather, they should be viewed as good models for clarity in particular.  

SURE 2021 Award Winners


Sophia Acquisto, Childhood Education (History concentration), ‘22

Mentor: Chrissy O’Grady, Library

Researching the Hudson Valley's Historically Significant Places for the Creation of an Educational History App


Erin Dougherty, Sculpture, ‘22

Mentor: Emily Puthoff, Art

Sculpting Resilience: Conserving Pollinators through Community Engagement


Brianna Flood, Biochemistry, ‘22

Mentors: Spencer Mass, Biology, and Pamela St. John, Chemistry

Quantifying Estrogen Disruptor Retention with Regenerative Phenotypes in Planaria


Zoë Foery, Biology, ‘22

Mentor: David Richardson, Biology

Does the Type of Pond Affect How the Pond Functions? A Study of Local Small Aquatic Waterbodies.


Julia Furfaro, Cellular Biology, ‘22

Mentor: Lydia Bright, Biology

Functional Effects of Gene Expression Changes During Infection of Paramecium


Daniel Hughes, Biology, ‘22

Mentor: Kara Belinsky, Biology

Nest Boxes at the Millbrook Preserve and Bird Banding at Mohonk: What birds Can Teach Us About Developing Sustainable Communities


Christopher Lunetta, Theatre Arts, ‘21

Gina Lardi, Theatre Arts, ‘22

Mentor: Katya Stanislavskaya, Theatre Arts

The Poorhouse Project: Workshopping a New Musical Theatre Piece


Lauren Mulvey, Digital Media Production & Journalism, ‘22

Steph Fogler, Adolescence Education, ‘22

Mentors: Nicola Wilson-Clasby, English, and Rachel Rigolino, English

Designing Online Writing Tutor Training Modules for ENG SWW


Matthew Querrard, Mechanical Engineering, ‘22

Mentor: Kevin Shanley, Engineering Programs

Diffusiophoretic Water Filtration


David Mano, History, ‘22

Mentor: Mary Christensen, Languages, Literatures & Cultures

Translation and Analysis of the Correspondence of the Count of Artois, Future King Charles X of France, 1792-1804


Jahed Miah, Biology & Biochemistry, ‘21

Mentor: Dominic McBrayer

Establishing a Reporter Assay for Inter-Species Quorum Sensing with Bacillus subtilis


Hugo Ramirez Grijalba, Mechanical Engineering

Mentor: Ping-Chuan Wang, Engineering Programs

Assessing Electrical Reliability of 3D-printed Copper Structures


Elizabeth Rigby, Geology, ‘22

Mentor: Kaustubh Patwardhan, Geology

Study of the 3D Geomorphology of Pillow Lavas Using Digital Image Analysis


Jenna Santaniello, Business Analytics & Finance, ‘21

Marco Lopez II, Business Analytics, ‘21

Mentor: Ai Ren, Business

The Impact of CARES Act on U.S. Healthcare System During the Covid-19 Pandemic


Kianu Schwerdtfeger, Linguistics, ‘22

Mentor: Oksana Laleko, Linguistics

Understanding the Effects of Top-Down Language Contact: Four Case Studies in Language Change


SURE 2021 Showcase

  To learn about the 2021 SURE projects, please visit its Symposium site.