International Research Experience for Undergraduates

Jump to important dates and application.

San Sebastian, Spain - La Concha beach and harbor near Bilbao in Basque country, taken by a student researcher

The University of Nevada, Reno Undergraduate Research and the University Study Abroad Consortium (USAC) are offering a program aimed at providing undergraduate students an opportunity to do research abroad and earn credits towards their degree. Students selected for this program will participate in an 8-10 week research experience with a mentor at a university in another country under the auspices of the USAC program and Undergraduate Research. You will work one-on-one with your selected mentor and their research team on an active research project in your field of interest. Mentors and their research projects are listed in the informational downloads on this page. All mentors speak English and the research will be conducted in English. All participants will be required to take intensive language during the first summer session unless the student has already completed the equivalent of one year of university level foreign language, or is a native speaker. This program is designed to allow students to have an international research experience while still making progress towards completing their major and particularly supports students in STEM disciplines. This opportunity requires a cumulative GPA of 2.5.

Four USAC universities participating

  • Universidad del Pais Vasco in Bilbao, Spain
  • Università degli Studi della Tuscia in Viterbo, Italy
  • Université de Pau et des Pays de L'Adour in Pau, France
  • Shanghai University in Shanghai, China

Previous mentors & projects

  • (Viterbo, Italy) Alfredo Di Filippo: Using tree-rings to reconstruct the ecological history of old-growth forests
  • (Viterbo, Italy) Francesco Sestili: Improving durum wheat quality and yield by TILLING
  • (Viterbo, Italy) Daniel Savatin: Induction of broad-spectrum resistance in wheat through the use of the environmentally friendly oligogalacturonide (OG) elicitors
  • (Pau, France) Yann Tison: Introduction to Surface Science
  • (Pau, France) Philippe Roose: Ubiquitous widgets & interactions
  • (Shanghai, China) Mei Liu: Electrical property measurement of exfoliated cells in voided urine by microfluidic devices
  • (Shanghai, China) Zhizheng Wu: (1) High quality imaging technology for biomedical and astronomical applications; (2) Manufacturing Execution System (MES) development for automotive industries
  • (Shanghai, China) Shunqi Zhang: Design, modeling and simulation of piezoelectric integrated smart structures
  • (Bilbao, Spain) Esther Acha Peña: Methanation process optimization with water sorption carbon based materials
  • (Bilbao, Spain) Ion Agirre-Arisketa: Production of furfural, a renewable biomass derived building block, be means of a N2 stripping coupled batch reactor
  • (Bilbao, Spain) Eduardo Jacob: Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV) for industrial applications
  • (Bilbao, Spain) Jesus Ma Requies: Production of unconventional furanic biofuel from biomass

Application and selection process

Online applications received by the submission deadline will receive full consideration, and those received after that will be considered on a space-available basis. Applications will be reviewed by Undergraduate Research and by faculty mentors abroad. Up to two students will be chosen for each program site. In order to accept an offer, you will be required to complete a USAC application. Students will expect to depart late May/early-June and return in late-July. Please see the USAC website for specific dates at each location.

Program costs

Students are responsible for paying the USAC program fees (discounted 40%) as well as any other costs that are not included in the program fees (e.g. flight). For details on each of the locations and the pricing, see the USAC website.

Undergraduate research awards

Funds have been established by the ASUN to provide Undergraduate Research Awards specifically to help in covering costs for this program.

Credit towards your major

International Research Experience students are required to work with the undergraduate adviser in their major along with Undergraduate Research and USAC in order to determine the best course number to earn credit for this experience.

Class presentation requirement

Students are required to present a brief synoposis of their research to a class they attend during the fall semester following their summer international experience, and share information about Undergraduate Research programming. Students will submit a signed form by their professor to Undergraduate Research.

Research symposium requirements

Students will present their research findings in a poster format for the Undergraduate Research Summer Symposium. This annual symposium is attended by students, university leadership, and members of the public .

Post-award survey requirement

Awardees and their mentors are also required to provide feedback on the program by completing a questionnaire provided by Undergraduate Research at the completion of their award.



Summer 2020

  • Submission deadline: Monday, February 10, 2020
  • Recipients announced: Wednesday, February 26, 2020
  • Present results: Summer Undergraduate Research Symposium, August, 2020

Ready to apply?

Online application


For questions regarding the application process please contact Undergraduate Research.