Undergraduate Research Opportunities

Many undergraduate majors undertake research in the labs of faculty. For those considering advanced degrees in Chemistry, Biochemistry or Bio-medical research, some hands-on laboratory research is nearly a requirement for admission to competitive programs. Students may either make informal arrangements with a given faculty member, may formally register for course credit (CHEM 399 or 499) and occasionally experienced students may receive salary for their efforts by arrangement with individual faculty.

Students who have performed undergraduate research in the department have presented at local and national meetings, and have been authors on research papers published articles in the top scientific journals.


Presentation by April Householder from October 2022 about finding Undergraduate Research Opportunities

How to go about finding a research lab:
A recommended approach is to look at the research descriptions for each faculty on the chemistry web pages and select two or three faculty whose research you are interested in. Email the faculty members to arrange an appointment with them to talk about the possibility of doing research in their lab.

Undergraduate Research Conferences at UMBC
Students have the opportunity to present their research at local and national conferences. There are two undergraduate conferences held at UMBC, the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in the Chemical and Biological Sciences, which is held in the Fall, and the Undergraduate Research Creative Achievement Day, which is held in the Spring.

The Baltimore SCIART Program takes place at UMBC each summer. Details about the program are available at the Baltimore SCIART homepage


UMBC University Research Award (URA) 
Students of all years can apply can apply for the competitive Undergraduate Research Award. The student will work closely with a research mentor and will present their research at the Undergraduate Research Creative Achievement Day. The Undergraduate Research Awards provide up to $1,500 to undergraduate student recipients to support their work.

Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship
The prestigious Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship program is named for former Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater, who was committed to encouraging Americans to pursue careers in science and mathematics. Goldwater Scholars receive 1-2 years of support for college expenses, up to $7,500 per year. Students in their junior or sophomore year are encouraged to apply.

The Minority Access to Research Careers Undergraduate Student Training in Academic Research (MARC U*STAR) Program at UMBC is dedicated to increasing the number of students from underrepresented groups in the sciences and mathematics and who plan to pursue doctoral degrees and research careers in the biomedical sciences. MARC trainees may receive up to two years of financial support plus $1,500 in annual research supply funding to Trainee’s mentor.



Meet a student researcher in Chemistry

Meet a student researcher in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology