Undergraduate Research in Physics
All physics program majors at Kent State University are strongly encouraged to become involved with undergraduate research projects. This can be done (i) through coursework, such as Individual Investigation or Senior Honors Thesis; (ii) through work as an undergraduate research assistant; or (iii) by participating in a summer internship or REU program (see below).
Our website lists the topic titles for some recent examples of undergraduate research projects of physics program majors at Kent State.
- See the April 6, 2009 issue of eInside to read the article, Physics Students Secure Telescope Donation From MIT to Further Research Opportunities, about a project involving radio astronomy at Kent State University.
- See the Winter 2007 issue of Kent State Magazine for an article about Amanda Yoho (PDF) (pg. 27), a 2007 physics program graduate from Kent State University, who talks about the importance of undergraduate research.
NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Program
The National Science Foundation makes possible a number of opportunities for undergraduates to join research projects each summer. This allows students to experience first-hand how basic research is carried out, and to contribute consequentially. The principal support by NSF of such activities is through the Research Experiences for Undergraduates Program.
REU "Sites" are established in all fields of science, mathematics, and engineering. Each Site consists of a group of ten or so undergraduates, who work in the research programs of the host institution. Students are in general accepted from throughout the country. Each student is assigned to a specific research project, where he/she works closely with the faculty, post-docs, and graduate students. In addition, seminars, lunch meetings, and social functions are organized to facilitate interaction between the undergraduates.
Students are granted stipends, and in some cases assistance with housing and travel. Students who are in those groups traditionally under-represented in science (women, members of under-represented minorities, and those with disabilities) are particularly urged to apply. Students with special personal needs or requirements, or who can attend a Site only under special conditions, are also encouraged to apply, and to discuss this with Site Directors in advance of the application dates.
Below you will find links to lists of all the REU Sites, arranged by NSF program area, and of some other activities supported by NSF that have similar summer programs. These lists should be checked periodically. Contact each Site directly for specific information, and for application procedures and deadlines.
Other good sources for summer research and internship opportunities are the sites below:
The following local companies and agencies also typically provide internship or summer research opportunities for Kent State University physics majors:
- KENT DISPLAYS Inc. (Kent, OH)
- Alphamicron Inc. (Kent, OH)
- NASA GRC Summer Internship Program (Cleveland, OH)
- Ohio Space Grant Consortium Internships
- Search for internships near Kent, OH
Finally, below is a useful KSU link for undergraduate research.