Undergraduate Research

Summer Grants

The Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activities (RSCA) office provides the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) grant. This grant supports faculty-mentored undergraduate student projects 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. For more details, see our list of eligible expenses.
  • 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 adopt a broad, inclusive definition of "research" and welcome applications from all academic divisions on campus (Fine & Performing Arts, Liberal Arts & Sciences, Library, School of Business, School of Education, and School of Science & Engineering).

Projects can take numerous forms. For example:

  • 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 who split the award.


SURE 2022 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 2022 Award Winners


Michael Anderson, Mathematics, ‘23

Mentor: Anca Radulescu, Mathematics

Synchronization and Clustering in Realistic Reticular Thalamic Brain Architectures


Brooke Cammann, Art History & Chemistry, ‘23

Mentor: Keely Heuer, Art History

From “Perfecting” to Stabilization: The Evolution of Ancient Italian Bronzeworking Conservation


Elina Dart, Economics, ‘23

Mentor: Edith Kuiper, Economics

Sadie Alexander and the Economics Science of Her Time


Paloma Estess, Biology: Environmental Concentration, ‘22

Mentor: David Richardson, Biology

Vertical Distribution and Diel Vertical Migration of Zooplankton in Regional Lakes


Gabriella Gilbride, History, ‘24

Mentor: Reynolds Scott-Childress, History

Coloring Race: The American Transformation of Group Categories, 1890-1910


Vanessa Grisales, Early Childhood Education (Concentration: History), ‘23

Mentor: Kiersten Greene, Teaching & Learning

Transinclusive Education in K-12 & Educator Preparation


Jeffrey Kitchen, Chemistry, ‘22

Alice Rojas, Geology, ‘23

Julia Cannizzo (rising sophomore award), Geology, ‘24

Mentor:  Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro, Geography

Trace Element (TE) Contamination of Kale by Atmospheric Deposition in Urban Community Gardens (UCGs)


Jake Pennisi, Mechanical Engineering; Digital Design & Fabrication, ‘23

Mentor: Kevin Shanley, Engineering

Agilus-30 Permeability and Its Role in Water Filtration


Matthew Pisano, Computer Science, ‘22

Mentor: Jaiung Jun, Mathematics

Jacobians of Graphs and Related Topics


Annabella Russo, Sociology, Criminology Concentration, ‘23

Mentor: Anna Gjika, Sociology

Rape Victims on Trial: Digital Evidence in Sexual Assault Proceedings


Canis Speranza, Biology-Psychology, ‘22

Mentor: Miles Wilklow-Marnell, Chemistry

Biological Effects of Betulinic Triterpenoids Derived from Native Birch and Sycamore Barks


Danielle Takacs, Biology, Organismal Track, ‘23

Sam Mustafa (rising sophomore award), Environmental Biology, ‘25

Mentor: Kara Belinsky, Biology

A Bird’s-eye View of How Wildlife is Affected by Development in the Hudson Valley


Carolyn Weinstein, Geography, History & Political Science, ‘23

Mentor: John Sharp, Geography

Breaking Barriers at Land Grant Institutions: A Historic Geography


Harel Yosef, Mechanical Engineering, ‘24

Mentor: Mahdi Farahikia, Engineering

Nature-Inspired Flow-Sensing Microphone Technology



SURE 2021 Showcase

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