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Program FAQs

Program Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I am selected to participate in CU LSAMP REU? 

  • After accepting our offer of participation in CU LSAMP REU, participants will be sent an acceptance package. This package will contain the following information:
  1. Stipend payment information
  2. Health history form
  3. Media release/Insurance form
  4. Travel itinerary form
  5. Summer program schedule (tentative)
  6. Residence hall and meal plan information
  7. Suggested items to bring
  8. Participant requirements
  • Participants are asked to fill out and sign the appropriate forms, and return to us. Issuance of stipend checks is contingent upon prompt return of the forms. Soon after, participants should receive an email containing information on housing, arrival information, orientation, etc.

What will I do during the research program?

  • Experiences differ from participant to participant, but the main point is to provide a scientific research experience akin to what graduate study would entail in each participant’s field of interest. A participant might learn to use specialized equipment, reduce and analyze observational data, write software, design or build an instrument, construct a theoretical model, or create a prototype. Participants will present their work in a talk or poster at the end of the summer, and many participants continue on to give posters at conferences or publish papers on their summer research. In the fall semester after the CU LSAMP REU program, participants may be interested in continuing the research project at their home institution or continuing to work with their Cornell faculty research mentors on writing up and publishing the results.
  • In addition to performing research work, participants attend a series of workshops and brown bag lunches designed to provide them with information about research, graduate school preparation, career preparation and options, and scientific ethics. Weekly specialty discussions provide opportunities for students to engage in discussion with peers and faculty members. A presentation on writing abstracts and designing posters is held in preparation for the research symposium. Students also may participate in field trips to science facilities. A mandatory orientation session, team building activities and a faculty-mentor dinner acquaint the students with each other and their mentors.

Will I have any free time?

  • Yes, participants will be working and living closely with other undergrads from around the country, and the CU LSAMP REU will offer planned organized activities (and sometimes travel) for participants. Aside from that, participants usually have evenings and weekends free depending upon the type of research one is performing. Students also may participate in field trips to science facilities. Opportunities may arise for participants to also participate in field trips to NYC and Niagara Falls. Social activities also provide opportunities for participants to get to know each other and other members of the Cornell science community.

Should I bring a car?

  • The option of bringing a car is totally up to the participant. CU LSAMP REU provides participants with either a parking pass or bus pass.

Who will my faculty research mentor and/or what research projects are available?

  • Applicants are encouraged to read about the research interests of potential Cornell Engineering faculty mentors by visiting their websites. We suggest identifying up to three (3) Cornell Engineering faculty members in the online application and essay whose research interests align with yours.
  • Every effort will be made to facilitate a pairing of faculty identified in the application essay. However, participants are not guaranteed pairing with faculty identified in the application essay

Can I take a course during the summer session while I am a participant of the CU LSAMP REU? 

  • No. Participants are expected to work 35-40 hours per week on their research project. This experience should be viewed similarly to a work experience. Thus, in order to get the maximum benefit out of this research program, participants are not allowed to take courses.

Am I allowed to depart early from the program? 

  • Participants must commit to be present at Cornell University for the full term of the research program period. Participants should arrange all personal and academic obligations to adjust to this schedule.

How does the travel subsidy work?

  • The cost of travel to and from Cornell University will be subsidized up to $300 for participants of the CU LSAMP REU program.

What type of housing is available to participants?

  • Participants are provided with on-campus housing in a double room on campus for the duration of the program. Participants are not required to live in University housing for the summer, but will not receive a subsidy for non-Cornell housing. We do not have housing available for married undergraduates or any other couples arrangements. To learn more about Cornell’s housing visit: Campus Life Housing.

Is my stipend taxable?

  • The remuneration you receive for your research experience is considered a “Stipend.” As such, Cornell will not report it to the Internal Revenue Service. Cornell may provide you with a summary statement of the stipend payments. This does not constitute tax advice.
  • You will not receive a W-2 or 1099 form from Cornell University.
    You should consult with your tax advisors, parents and/or IRS form 520 at tax time to determine the extent to which your stipend is taxable.
  • You will be responsible for determining how your stipend should be reported on your tax return.

Will I have health coverage or access to a student health center during CU LSAMP REU?

  • Students will not be provided with health insurance through CU LSAMP REU.
  • It is likely that participants will be covered under his/her school or family’s plan during the summer. It would be wise to check this and to bring any necessary medical insurance documents upon arrival.

I don’t see the answer to my question! What should I do?

  • We’re happy to respond to any questions about the program that are not addressed here. Please email us or call to speak with a staff member. Office: (607) 255-6403; email: dpeng@cornell.edu.