Undergraduate Research: Easy & Accessible
As someone who came into college super interested in pursuing undergraduate research, Dartmouth has not disappointed, with research opportunities available (quite literally) at every turn. As a top research institution, Dartmouth has tons of opportunities to get involved in research, whether in a lab or reading manuscripts. Also, the undergraduate focus of Dartmouth means that you'll be receiving individualized attention from leaders in your field. In this blog post, I'll talk you through the process of getting research as well as research funding available through the college!
Since arriving at Dartmouth, I've had the opportunity to work in two different labs, one in the Biology department and another in the Earth Sciences. The Biology lab worked to understand the biochemical signaling pathways induced by two hormones that lead to ripening and growth. In my current research position, I'm creating a database of river geometry measurements that we intend to use to better understand the factors that control river shape, which is super important when discussing how to restore disturbed river systems.
While it may sound like I've just gotten lucky with research positions, getting to work with both labs was as easy as sending an email. The Undergraduate Advising and Research Office maintains an online list of professors looking for undergraduate research assistants. Almost always, students who cold email a couple of professors from the list with some details about their interests and strengths will receive a research position.
After landing a research position, most students apply for funding, allowing them to get paid for their hours spent working, whether completing experiments in a traditional STEM lab or analyzing Chaucer. Applying for funding is pretty easy, with undergraduate research funds available for a variety of different fields: with applications just a couple of clicks away through the Undergraduate Advising and Research Office. As a whole, the process of navigating undergraduate research at Dartmouth is simple, with abundant research opportunities with some of the best professors in the world!