Undergraduate Research Committee
The Undergraduate Research Committee (URC) is responsible for promoting and expanding research opportunities to undergraduates and enhancing the undergraduate research experience at the university. For the 2012-2013 academic year, the committee will focus on exploring ways to integrate research into the curriculum while continuing to make opportunities and information more accessible to students. Members will also work to foster an interconnected undergraduate research community by working closely with programs and organizations on campus that support and facilitate undergraduate research. Another goal is to document students’ undergraduate research experiences through visual media as a way to illustrate the significance of research at the university and publicize Research Week. Other committee responsibilities include administering the $1,000 Undergraduate Research Grant, planning the annual Research Reception to honor excellence in undergraduate research, and hosting the university-wide Research Week, which is a celebration of undergraduate research and creative activity.
Hometown: Round Rock, TX
Majors: Biomedical Engineering/Plan II
Hometown: Austin, TX
Issues Committee is Currently Focusing On
The Undergraduate Research Committee (URC) is looking at ways to possibly integrate undergraduate research into the curriculum through the inclusion of more inquiry-based courses. URC is also discussing the showing of student support in university research initiatives, emphasizing the need for teaching and research to be interdependent. URC will work to encourage student representation of undergraduate research within programs and organizations across campus. The committee aims to accurately represent the student voice in undergraduate research affairs, and in order to this, URC will look to communicate, partner, and collaborate with the College Councils through outreach efforts to better understand the needs, priorities, and values of students at the college level. The committee will continue to increase accessibility and promote undergraduate research opportunities here at UT Austin while maintaining undergraduate research a university priority.
Committee Legislation 2012-13
Research Week is a campus-wide celebration of undergraduate research and creative activity. Research Week, co-sponsored by the Senate of College Councils’ Undergraduate Research Committee and the School of Undergraduate Studies joins existing programs, events, and activities that showcase undergraduate research and creative activity. It also highlights the many research opportunities available to students. Undergraduate research is taking place in every college and school at UT, and a wealth of resources is available for undergraduates who choose to get involved in research. By coordinating a week-long event highlighting the work of these programs and students, the goal is to raise awareness of the many research opportunities available to undergraduates and to display the exciting research UT students and faculty are doing every day.
You can find more information, including a schedule of events, a participant list and ways to get involved at http://www.utexas.edu/ugs/researchweek/
The Undergraduate Research Committee’s goal is to foster a more visible undergraduate research culture on campus by uniting research-based organizations and programs. The members of URC also realized the importance of increasing student input and representation within the Office of Undergraduate Research and have established a student advisory body.
Consisting of Senate’s Undergraduate Research Committee, members from research programs and organizations, and delegates from the College Councils, the Research Student Advisory Council (RSAC) supports and facilitates the effective communication of ideas, values, and knowledge regarding undergraduate research between the student representatives and the Office of Undergraduate Research.
Mission and Goals
- To represent students within the Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR), serve as an advisory board to OUR, and provide feedback to the OUR coordinators
- To raise awareness of research and its associated benefits through hosting programs and events as well as encourage relationships between students and faculty by connecting students to faculty research projects
- To cultivate the exchange of ideas and resources regarding undergraduate research between the Office of Undergraduate Research, Senate’s Undergraduate Research Committee, the research-based organizations and programs across campus, and the College Councils
- To allow participating organizations to share their ideas with each other, and in the process streamline and spread the advertisement of research opportunities
The Research Reception, hosted annually by the Undergraduate Research Committee (URC), honors excellence in undergraduate research by recognizing the awards and accomplishments of students from various research organizations and programs in addition to the Senate’s own research grant and research spotlight winners. The Reception unites students, faculty, administrators, and staff in this special celebration of undergraduate research and its impact on the university’s academic culture.
URC actively encourages students to engage in undergraduate research and strives to create a more vibrant and interconnected undergraduate research community. As part of this mission, the committee wants to award those students who have excelled in their participation in research by planning and hosting a Research Reception towards the end of the spring semester.
Each semester, the Senate of College Councils’ Undergraduate Research Committee administers a $1,000 undergraduate research grant. The grant seeks to encourage students to become actively involved in research early in their undergraduate careers by providing funding to a deserving applicant. One winner receives the $1,000 prize to be used towards the funding of his or her research.
Download the application and get more information here: http://utsenate.org/urg/. Eligible applicants include students assisting a faculty member with a research project, as well as students conducting independent or partnered research.
Undergraduate Researcher of the Month
Each month during the school year the Undergraduate Research Committee selects one outstanding student researcher from a particular college or school at the University to be spotlighted as the Undergraduate Researcher of the Month. Recipients display a commitment and passion toward research and clearly demonstrate the positive impact of their experience. Each Undergraduate Researcher of the Month is highlighted on UT Austin’s Know Web site by University Communications and participates in a Q&A about their individual research experience. Recipients of the award are also invited to a Senate General Assembly meeting to speak about their research and be recognized for their achievement. Click here to see past recipients of the Undergraduate Researcher of the Month award.
Committee Members’ Individual Initiatives
More information on each project or event coming soon!
- Undergraduate Researcher for a Day (UR for a Day)
- Expand the presentation of research opportunities and dissemination of information at freshman and transfer orientations
- Ethics in Research Seminar during Research Week
- UT Research Opportunities and Resources brochure
- State-wide Research and Teaching Fair
Getting involved in Undergraduate Research
There are multiple ways to get involved in research:
1. Always start off by talking to a professor in the field of research you are interested in. They have the inside scoop concerning projects and can inform you of specific qualities and information needed for your specific interests.
2. Access Eureka! At http://www.utexas.edu/research/eureka/, a research database where students can browse and read up on various projects.
3. Attend an Undergraduate Research Information Session, hosted by the School of Undergraduate Studies. Access http://www.utexas.edu/ugs/ugr/students/sessions/register for more information.
Finally, a student should be excited and passionate when trying to find a research project, it may take you a while to find a professor and project that you are truly compatible with.
Undergraduate Research Informational Video
A short video by Undergraduate Research Committee co-chair Ryan Hirsch about how students can get involved in undergraduate research.
Research Information Links
UT’s Main Research Page
Undergraduate Research Main Page
Research by College/School
Research by University Units, Centers, Institutes and Groups
Communication Sciences & Disorders – Undergraduate Research
Communication Studies – Undergraduate Research
Cockrell School of Engineering Undergraduate Research Resources
College of Natural Sciences Undergraduate Research Program
College of Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Resources
College of Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Opportunities Search
Department of Psychology Undergraduate Research Opportunities
Freshman Research Initiative
Summer Research Scholars Program
Student-Led Research Organizations
LAUNCH: Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research Chapter
SURGe: Science Undergraduate Research Group