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What is the University or Tennessee Microbiology REU program?

  • The University of Tennessee Microbiology REU program is an intense 10-week opportunity where undergraduate students will experience life working in a science lab. As a participant you will be working closely with other undergraduates from around the U.S., graduate students and faculty and staff mentors on projects related to microbiology. In addition to gaining research experience, participants will learn about many things including, but not limited to, proper experimental design, ethics of science and how to present scientific information. This REU is a wonderful opportunity to make contacts in the field of microbiology and help propel yourself into an exciting career!

How is the program funded?

  • Major funding is provided by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

How many students will participate?

  • We expect to have NSF funding for 10 students.

What are my chances of getting admitted?

  • We are expecting around 300 applicants. But don’t let that number discourage you! Getting admitted to our program is not all about having the highest GPA. We also consider lots of other criteria, such as your commitment to a career in science, how well your interests match those of our faculty, and whether this would be an opportunity you could not get at your home institution.

Is this a paid research training program?

  • Yes, the stipend will be $6750.

Who is eligible to apply?

  • Students who are entering their sophomore, junior, or senior years are eligible.

Can current seniors apply?

  • Unfortunately, those graduating this coming Spring or Summer are not eligible.

Do I have to be a United States citizen or permanent resident?

  • Yes. To be eligible for NSF funding, you must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident (hold a green card).

Are UT students eligible?

  • Yes, provided you meet the other selection criteria. Please note, however, that applications from UT are given somewhat lower priority because one of our goals is to serve students from other institutions where research opportunities are limited.

Is there an application fee?

  • No, there is no fee to apply for the REU program

How do I apply for the REU program?

What do I need in order to apply?

  • Applicants must submit the following application material:
  1. Completed application form;
  2. Academic transcript(s);
  3. A brief personal statement (maximum of 500 words) on research interests, previous experience/training (if any) and how participation in the REU Program will contribute to the student’s academic and professional development;
  4. At least oneĀ letter of recommendation from a faculty member.
  5. Resume with current and accurate contact information.

When must I apply?

  • We will begin accepting applications in early December. The application deadline is March 1st.
    You are responsible for ensuring that your application is complete prior to the application deadline. We will operate using a rolling admissions process so it behooves you to submit your application early.

What are the selection criteria? What is the selection process?

  • Applications are reviewed by the REU program coordinators. Acceptance into the program is based on multiple criteria including academic performance, research interests, career goals and letters of recommendation. Candidates are notified as soon as possible after selection.

When do students find out if they’ve been accepted into the REU program?

  • We will begin accepting students as early as January 1. We expect to notify all applicants no later than April 1st. We would appreciate you letting us know if you have accepted another offer for summer research as soon as possible.

What are the typical work hours?

  • Hours are determined by your mentor and the project you are working on, but generally you should plan on putting in a minimum of eight hours per day. There are no concrete start or end times.

Is the starting date flexible?

  • The start date is not flexible.

Where will I live at The University of Tennessee?

  • On-campus housing is included for the ten weeks of the program. Housing is conveniently located within walking distance to all UT buildings and labs.

Do I have to participate for the full ten weeks of the program?

  • Yes.

Can I take classes while I am participating in the program?

  • No. The program is a full-time commitment.

What about travel?

  • We will pay for your flight or, if you are driving, we will reimburse you for mileage. Once you are accepted to the program, we will contact you to help with travel arrangements.

What if I still have questions or comments?