Research Opportunities

Undergraduate research

Many honors students have a desire to get involved in undergraduate research.  Fortunately, as North Carolina's urban research institution, UNC Charlotte works to provide undergraduate research opportunities for its students. 

UNC Charlotte Undergraduate Research Conference

The UNC Charlotte Undergraduate Research Conference (URC) is a university-wide showcase of research projects completed by undergraduate students of all levels from all colleges and departments in the university. The URC is co-sponsored by Academic Affairs, Atkins Library, Charlotte Research Institute, the Honors College, and the Levine Scholars program, and is housed in the Office of Undergraduate Research.  Undergradute students are encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity to present their research. Many honors students use the conferece to present and defend their senior honors thesis/project. 

Awards are made by each department; Honors College awards are presented as well.  Students may apply for an Atkins Library Undergraduate Research Award

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Charlotte Research Scholars Program

The Charlotte Research Scholars Program (CRS) is a summer program that began in 2012 for high-achieving undergraduate students to gain experience in research and professional development in their field of interest. These opportunities are not available in the typical undergraduate classroom. This learn-by-doing model places an emphasis on graduate education and allows the scholars to put experiential learning into practice, preparing them to excel in their future studies and research.

In addition to mentored research activities, scholars participate in weekly professional development training to build skills critical to professional success.  Topics include: responsible conduct of research, developing a competitive research fellowship application, preparing an academic resume, professional communication tools, and a session on preparing for graduate school.

The CRS program is open to rising juniors and seniors from all academic disciplines. To be eligible, students must have a minimum GPA of 2.8 and a demonstrated desire to do independent research. Scholars will work approximately 35 hours a week and will receive $5,000.  CRS Scholars will not be allowed to work other part-time jobs or enroll in summer classes during the ten-week CRS program.

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Charlotte Community Scholars Program

The Community Scholars Program (CCS) is one of several research experiences for undergraduates offered each summer at UNC Charlotte. The CCS began in 2015 as a sister program to the well-established Charlotte Research Scholars program. Scholars work directly with a faculty mentor and a community partner on an engaged scholarship project, participate in weekly professional development meetings with other students, and present their research findings at the annual Charlotte Research Symposium, the capstone event for all undergraduate research programs.

The primary purpose of the UNC Charlotte Community Scholars Program is to provide students with an immersive, engaged scholarship experience that strengthens the academic mission of the University, advances the public good, and addresses critical community needs. During the nine-week program, students engage in community-based learning and professional development opportunities while reflecting on the challenges and rewards of working for the public good.  Students grow in their capacities as engaged scholars, skilled employees, and democratic citizens.  The community benefits from deeper engagement with the University in addressing critical community needs.

Students who participate in undergraduate research are more likely to be admitted to and successfully complete graduate programs.  Student community scholars have the option of working full-time (40 hours/week) or part-time (20 hours/week) throughout the nine-week summer program and will be paid an hourly wage of $14.28. At the end of the nine-week program, scholars will have the opportunity to present their research at the Undergraduate Research Symposium in a poster presentation format.

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Research Experiences for Undergraduates

In addition to the CRS and CCS programs, some UNC Charlotte departments offer summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REUs). These programs vary in length and content depending on the department offering them.