Katy Colbry

Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Services, College of Engineering.

The College of Engineering has sponsored a summer undergraduate research program for decades. In 2012, this activity was reinvented as EnSURE (Engineering Summer Undergraduate Research Experience), and a series of professional development seminars were developed to enhance the experience of undergraduate participants. Over time, this programming was refined based on best practices from the “Entering Research” curriculum and grew from 35 participants to a record of 120, before settling on an average of 55 undergraduates and 35 faculty mentors annually.

The project proposed here will reinvent the professional development training offered as part of EnSURE to become a flexible, asynchronous, online learning experience that can support students both during full-time summer research programs and during part-time academic year experiences. Reimagined as EGR 893, this new course will provide an honors-level credit for undergraduate students engaged in research, which is widely recognized as a high-impact learning practice (Kuh 2008). Shifting this course to an asynchronous online format will accommodate students throughout the academic year and allow them to balance other academic and personal needs while continuing to build professional skills to enhance their success in research.