Student Research

As an undergraduate student at the University of Minnesota Rochester (UMR), you can pursue opportunities to conduct research with UMR faculty or off-campus at one of our partner organizations, such as Mayo Clinic.

Participating in research can help you develop technical and critical thinking skills, gain a deeper understanding of science by applying concepts learned in the classroom to real-world problems and help you prepare for graduate school, health professions or industrial research.

Directed Research or Directed Study Course Credit During the Academic Year

Working directly with faculty at UMR allows you to earn academic credit for your work. Students with little research experience can begin with the 1XXX level experiences as early as their first year at UMR. The more advanced coursework can be a good option for the student with more research experience. All research opportunities on campus start with identifying a faculty mentor. In addition to teaching, many UMR faculty engage in research on learning as well as their individual areas of interest. Research interests of individual faculty members vary. A good way to learn more is by reading the Faculty Bios and UMR Faculty Research and Publications. Experiences that students have completed with faculty in past semesters are listed. Be thoughtful about what types of research and topics you are interested in, and which faculty members would be a best fit.

The Directed Study and Directed Research Form is due before you register for academic credit. You and your faculty mentor will work together on this form to define your research project, what you will do, and how it will be evaluated. This process takes time so plan accordingly.

  • Forms for summer or fall experiences are due May 15
  • Forms for spring experiences are due December 15

Special Research Student (SRS) Off-Campus Credit Experience During the Academic Year with Mayo Clinic 

UMR BSHS students may apply for Mayo Clinic Special Research Student appointments as early as the spring of their sophomore year. This opportunity is intended to provide meaningful research experience to students with an interest in research and to expose them to educational opportunities at Mayo Clinic for prospective candidates to the biomedical sciences PhD and MD-PhD programs. The experience is unpaid.

Students must:

  • Have at least one semester of research experience

  • A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0

  • Can dedicate at least 10 hours per week to the experience  

  • Plan to commit for a semester (or ideally one academic year)

  • Meet the course prerequisites outlined within the application

Watch for details in the Raptor Report each October and February. If accepted, students do need to complete the form on the UMR Internships and Off-Campus Research webpage.

  • Applications for fall experiences are due March 25

  • Applications for spring experiences are due October 24

Employment Research Opportunities

Working hourly in a lab can be a great way to gain initial exposure, training and experience. Entry level work provides you with laboratory skills and allows you to see how labs function.

  • During the academic year:

    • These opportunities are often available to students with Work Study funds and are posted on the UMR Student Employment website. Search Off-Campus Opportunities to see entry-level research opportunities through Mayo Clinic. There may be On-Campus Opportunities with UMR faculty as well.

  • Summer:

Other Research Opportunities

As a UMR student, you can apply for an Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) scholarship to receive funding for a faculty-mentored research project. UROP facilitates undergraduate participation in faculty-mentored research projects on all U of M campuses. The program is flexible, allowing research study in any academic area University-wide.

Applications are accepted once in the fall and once in the spring.

Other opportunities:

UMR Raptor Research Fund

Current UMR students can complete the form to apply for research funds. Funds are available to cover expenses related to presentation of research/scholarship at conferences or similar. Highest preference will be given for travel expenses related to research/scholarly presentations followed by travel expenses related to data acquisition. Other expenses related to research or other scholarly activity would be considered only if funds permit and other sources have been explored.

Preference will be given to Juniors and Seniors. The size of the awards will be based on the number of applications and need. The form, once completed, will be sent to the Scholarship Committee for review.

NOTE: An adviser support statement is a required component of this process. An advisor can be a Principle Investigator (PI), UMR faculty, Student Success Coach, etc.

UMR Research Symposium

Current undergraduate UMR students can register to present and share research and projects during the annual UMR Research and Education Symposium. The event is held on the last day of classes during the spring term. The deadline to register is in April, more details can be found online