National REU Programs for Summer Research

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (or REUs) are competitive summer research programs in the United States for undergraduates studying math or science. The programs receive funding from the National Science Foundation, but they are run and hosted by professors at various schools throughout the U.S. An REU typically accepts between 8 and 12 students. These participants travel to the host institution to work on a supervised research project for approximately 10 weeks. Typically the program pays for transportation to and from the host institution, provides housing and food during the program, and pays a small stipend (usually around $5,000--$10,000 for 10 weeks of work). Each student is associated with a specific research project, and works under close guidance and supervision of faculty. Students may work together in groups or on individual research projects. REUs are among the most prestigious summer programs that an undergraduate can participate in.

Since the program is funded by the NSF, undergraduates must be citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. or its possessions. Applications are typically due between February and March. The length of the application ranges from a single letter of reference without supporting materials all the way up to something comparable to a college admissions application. The programs generally require between one and three letters of reference, a transcript, 0-2 essays, a letter of interest, a resume, a biographical form, or some combination thereof. Although all eligible students are encouraged to apply, there is an emphasis on including populations under-represented in science, such as women, under-represented minorities, and persons with disabilities.

For students who do not wish to travel far, the following REUs are at Sam Houston State University (in Huntsville, Texas) and Texas A&M University (in College Station, Texas). Both are within two hours of Houston.

REU programs require you to be an undergraduate student at the time you participate. This means you cannot participate in an REU the summer after you graduate from college. The following are programs that accept students who have just graduated from college and are planning to go to graduate school.

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