About us

Student doing field research sitting on a steep, rocky slope looking down at a mountain lake and holding a notepad

Being involved in research, scholarship and creative activity outside of the classroom not only offers a unique way to explore your interests, but will prepare you for the highly competitive job market. Undergraduate students’ exposure to these opportunities is generally very limited. Having research experience will give you an edge in your career field or in your pursuit of a graduate degree—an option you may not have even considered before.

Doing research doesn’t only mean working in a lab… it can be anything from a photographic analysis of a changing landscape over time to studying salt-loving plants to improve crop production in marginal lands. Whether your interests are in the arts, sciences, journalism, education or another field, our office is here to help you expand your experience while at the University.

Read about our recent awardee’s passion for the environment and her experiences through our community-based awards and the Nevada Undergraduate Research Award. Meet Nikki Nadeau, McNair Scholar and undergraduate researcher.

Undergraduate research mission

The University of Nevada, Reno is an active research institution. Our mission is to promote, support and publicize undergraduate research, scholarship and creative activity in all disciplines through the following activities:

  1. Expand undergraduate research, scholarship and creative activity opportunities
  2. Develop and maintain outreach tools
  3. Facilitate faculty involvement
  4. Publicize external undergraduate research, scholarship and creative activity funding opportunities to faculty and provide support in developing undergraduate grant proposals
  5. Recognize faculty involvement in undergraduate research
  6. Publish Undergraduate Research in an accredited journal

Our goals for undergraduate researchers

CABNR student doing field research

Develop skills to conduct research, scholarship and creative activity

Students need more than the classroom experience to find rewarding jobs. Undergraduate research will teach you the process of developing creative ideas, formulating and executing research and presenting the outcome. These skills will enable you to adapt to new ideas and pursue them in a systematic way, plus you’ll greatly enhance your ability to communicate in written and verbal form.

Two neuroscience students: one sitting with experimental headgear on and the other standing and fitting the headgear

Develop and produce new knowledge

One of the major roles of universities is to create and investigate new ideas. Undergraduates are important members of university research teams, often involving graduate students and research associates, operating under the guidance of a faculty mentor. Undergrads strengthen these teams and often have a positive effect on the direction of the work with their fresh and unbiased look at new ideas.

Five people in an outdoors testing area looking up at an autonomous drone flying overhead

Motivate talented students and prepare them for graduate school

Many highly capable students don’t consider the option of pursing graduate degrees. The perception that graduate education is hard, costly and not rewarding is commonly overcome by involving yourself in research as an undergrad. The satisfaction that comes from solving a problem or attempting a creative endeavor can create a new perspective and potentially encourage you to attend graduate school.

A faculty and a student researcher in a lab in front of a computer screen, looking at a lab notebook in the student's hands

Create a strong sense of community

Undergraduate research, scholarship and creative activity will provide a mechanism to interact more closely and frequently with faculty mentors and other researchers on campus. The improved sense of belonging and accomplishment will enrich your educational experience and provide opportunities to explore career paths.