Research and Mentoring
The Honors College values undergraduate research as an important form of experiential learning and encourages faculty to offer opportunities to engage students in undergraduate research in the arts, humanities, social and natural sciences.
We are eager to welcome VCU’s top faculty members into the Honors community and to support and reward them for their efforts. The Honors College strives to provide professional development funding to those who offer Honors topics courses and who serve as faculty mentors. The Honors College also recognizes faculty who teach in Honors as Honors faculty fellows and periodically names several Honors award recipients.
Honors faculty mentors who engage in research with our students report their experiences as especially rewarding. Through the Honors Summer Undergraduate Research Program, for example, faculty may be paired with an exceptional Honors student dedicated to assisting with the instructor’s research. Faculty mentors are frequently so impressed with the students’ work that they often continue working with these highly-motivated students long after the summer program has ended.
The Honors Summer Undergraduate Research Program provides a $600 stipend for up to 15 individual faculty members or faculty teams members who offer an intensive, nine-week summer research experience to selected Honors students. Applications from post-docs as well as full-time faculty are welcome, and projects that engage the local community or address topics of diversity and inclusion are strongly encouraged. Faculty members in any discipline may apply.
These grants are designed to provide faculty with research assistance and to engage high-achieving undergraduates in innovative research projects across all disciplines. The primary goal is to engage students in scholarly research activities that may ultimately lead to conference presentations, co-authored publications or national scholarship applications such as Fulbright, Goldwater and Truman.
All faculty receiving the grant must be willing to interview student applicants and assist in the selection process. Awarded researchers submit a final report or evaluation at the project’s completion.
The priority deadline is February 1, but projects will be accepted on a continuous basis until all spaces are filled. Visit the Honors application portal to complete the faculty application. Contact Jackie Smith-Mason for more information.
The Freshman Research Institute (FRI) is designed to introduce up to 20 incoming freshmen to undergraduate research at VCU. It is an excellent opportunity for faculty to share their research interests and information about career paths within their discipline, to describe what makes a great research assistant and to suggest how to get the most out of an undergraduate research experience. FRI occurs in August a few days before New Student Orientation. The Honors College seeks faculty proposals to engage students during the program.
The priority deadline is June 30, but projects will be accepted on a continuous basis until all spaces are filled. Visit the Honors application portal to complete the faculty application. Contact Jackie Smith-Mason, Ph.D. for more information.