Undergraduate Research Program

The Undergraduate Research Program began in 2005.  Supporting undergraduate research is a way to help our students succeed.  Students work with faculty mentors to collaborate on projects appropriate to a student's particular discipline.

Program Goals

  • Encourage and promote critical thinking and creative expression
  • Establish the foundation for continued education in a specialized discipline
  • Enhance discipline-specific skill sets and learning experiences
  • Promote independent learning, including practical or clinical-based experiences
  • Enhance appreciation of how knowledge is discovered and works are created
  • There are two types of Undergraduate Research programs.

Grant Types

The Undergraduate Researcher Grant Programs

  • open to all full-time students
  • student candidates must have faculty member project mentor
  • preference given to students who've completed 30 semester hours (minimum) of course work

Undergraduate Researcher Grant Proposal Cover Sheet

The Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) Fellows Program

  • available to full-time students in all disciplines
  • students must have completed sophomore year (students are eligible to participate in the summer following completion of 60 semester hours)
  • students must have a minimal GPA of 3.0 in their major and overall
  • receiving a SURE fellowship precludes receiving academic credit for research conducted in the summer.  It is not permitted for a student to receive both course credit and a stipend.
  • SURE Fellows may not be enrolled in summer school courses while participating in SURE
  • interested students must be nominated b a faculty member who will serve as the student's mentor

SURE Fellows Proposal Cover Sheet

Selection Process

The Undergraduate Research Advisory Council (URAC), comprised of FSU faculty, will consider each proposal carefully and make a decision based upon the merits of the project.  The Council will notify research teams who have been selected for awards.  All decisions of the Council will be final.

Undergraduate Research Advisory Council

J. Robert Baker, Professor, Senior Level, of English.  College of Liberal Arts

Undergraduate research is among the very best things that Fairmont State University does.  It encourages students to undertake work on projects of their designing, and it allows them to polish and refine their intellectual and scholarly skills.  It energizes faculty mentors and renews everyone’s faith in our shared pursuit of knowledge and beauty.

Judy P. Byers

Mark Flood

Rebecca Giorcelli, Assoc. Professor & Info. Systems Management Coordinator, School of Business

I have been a member of the Undergraduate Research Advisory Council since its inception.  Over that time I have actively mentored undergraduate research students every semester.  One of my most memorable projects was a Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) project for which I mentored two students, Joe Boyd and Josh Posey, conducting research related to algorithms in a public grid infrastructure.  This work was done in collaboration with Mr. Jeff Tucker, CIO and other researchers at the Innovative Management and Technology Services (IMTS).  The first day of the project both students were a bit overwhelmed, expressed a lot of frustration, and did not feel they would be able to handle the level of work required.  I reassured them that undergraduate research is a learning process.  By the end of the project, their work was selected for presentation at the Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol in Charleston, WV, the Star Symposium in Morgantown, WV and the highly competitive Posters on the Hill event at the Capitol in Washington, D.C.  It was inspirational to observe the personal ownership the students took in their work, the confidence they gained throughout the project, and the obvious pride they felt as they presented the results of their work.  Ultimately, as a direct result of this research project, both students received job offers upon graduation.

Nannette McDonald

John E. O'Connor, Professor, Senior Level, of Theatre.  School of Fine Arts

I have mentored several UR projects and it has been a great pleasure to watch as students work through the process from excitement to frustration to new discoveries and, ultimately, increased confidence and scholarly growth.  Working with students on their original research has made me a better scholar and teacher.

Sharon Smith

Every semester it is inspirational to read such a wide variety of undergraduate research proposals.  While I have not yet had the opportunity to mentor an undergraduate researcher, it has been an enlightening experience to see the level of work our students have attained.  It is one of our best kept secrets at Fairmont State!

Donald Trisel


Student Research

Research & Development of an Information Systems Tool for the NASA K12 Space Weather Education Program

Apoptosis and the Enhancement of Invasiveness of Glioblastoma Cells

Comparison of Artificial Insemination and Natural Mating Methods of Queen Honeybee Rearing

Effects of Deep-Brain Stimulation on Bilateral Asymmetry in Parkinsonian Gait

Inquiry Into Student Life Motivation and Participation


Contact Info

Dr. J. Robert Baker
Undergraduate Research Program
Room 311 Jaynes Hall
Phone: 304.367.4717
E-Mail: JRobert.Baker@fairmontstate.edu