Undergraduate Research Opportunities

Susan Geisert advising a studentOne of the greatest benefits of attending a major Research I university is the opportunity to participate in the excitement of new discoveries and the production of new knowledge. Honors College students participate in research all over campus, in subjects ranging from infant cognition to iconographic traditions of the American Southwest, from the life and art of Tennessee Williams to gene therapies for brain cancer. Honors students regularly present their research at two annual on-campus Undergraduate Research Forums. In addition, some Honors students have the opportunity to give presentations at regional and national conferences and even publish research papers in professional journals.

The Honors College works closely with the Office of Undergraduate Research to help students discover research opportunities that are right for them. A list of research programs for students in every major is available on the Undergraduate Research website.

To allow very high-achieving freshmen an early opportunity to participate in the excitement of undergraduate research, the Honors College also offers the Discovery Fellows Program.

Honors College Discovery Fellows Program for 1st Year Students

First-semester freshmen with an ACT composite score of 33 or better are eligible for the Honors College Discovery Fellows Program. The Discovery Fellows Program gives students the opportunity to work with a faculty member on a research project or other scholarly activity appropriate to their major. Students are identified from application data and are contacted in January of their senior year to submit an application essay to the Discovery Fellows Coordinator. Participants are selected by the deans of their respective colleges or schools. Fellows work eight hours per week during the academic year. They are paid a stipend of $1,700 for the year. (This stipend should not affect a student’s financial aid package.) Fellows also receive automatic acceptance to the Honors College. Students submit monthly progress reports to the Discovery Fellows Coordinator, and participate in a fall orientation, social gatherings, and a year-end seminar at which they re-cap their experiences. In the past, participating students have been selected from the following schools and colleges: Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; Arts and Science; Business; Engineering; Human Environmental Studies, Health Professions and Journalism.

Recent Projects include:

  • Blogger Criticism of the Media
  • Effect of Binge Drinking on the Brain
  • Improving the Power of Energetic Materials with Nanotechnology
  • Odd-Lot Trading on Wall Street
  • Privacy Survey of Students and their Comfort level with Personal Information Being Public
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries and Strokes
  • Cancer Cells Research

Contacts: Kristina Wright, Discovery Fellows Coordinator (214 Lowry Hall; (573) 882-4112; WrightKr@missouri.edu) or Dr. Nancy West, Honors College Director (211 Lowry Hall; 882-3893; WestN@missouri.edu).