Research Experiences for Undergraduates

Interdisciplinary Materials & Physics Summer Research Program: This Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program, sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF), offers positions in various Penn State departments that are open to undergraduate students from all across the country who are majoring in physics, chemistry, material science, all branches of engineering, etc. This particular REU program at Penn State gives participants the opportunity to fully engage in frontier interdisciplinary materials research and utilize many state-of-the-art facilities and instruments. Students are matched with Center faculty members who share their research interests and conduct projects that are related to topics within the current MRSEC portfolio. Personal mentors include the faculty adviser, together with graduate students and postdoctoral scholars in the research group.

In addition to the research activities and seminars offered within the program, professional development opportunities include an inside look at the world of informal science education at The Franklin Institute and a science outreach experience during the Central PA Festival of the Arts. Further, participants become part of a diverse, welcoming, campus-wide summer research community.  Multiple Penn State REU programs, each of which focus upon a distinctly different research theme, come together for several community building events and general-topic seminars such as "science communication" and "career pathways for PhD's". A Welcome Orientation and Picnic at the start of the summer celebrates the diversity of scientific expertise and the importance of individual differences and unique backgrounds in order to successfully pursue current scientific challenges.  A Research Symposium, with the feel of a professional conference, concludes the summer with the opportunity for all participants to share the results of their work via a short presentation and poster session. 

Domestic students from a diverse range of backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Note:  This NSF REU program is jointly hosted by both the Physics Department’s NSF REU site grant and the Center for Nanoscale Science (MRSEC).

Apply to the Penn State Interdisciplinary Materials & Physics REU Program.