Undergraduate researchers geared for insect collection

Undergraduate researchers from the Biology Department's Lockwood lab prepare to gather moths in the field.

Getting involved in a biologically-focused research project is practical experience that can't be beat.  Here are a few avenues to take you there:

UVM Undergraduate Research

UVM’s science faculty are both professors AND professional researchers – this benefits you!  Any UVM student can pursue research credit in any affiliated College or Program within UVM.  Biological Science majors can apply up to 6 credits of biologically-related research to their advanced life-science elective requirement.  Levels of involvement include apprenticing, participating in the faculty member's (or their graduate student's) research, or developing a research project of your own.  Peruse faculty research interests below.

UVM's Office of Fellowships, Opportunities, and Undergraduate Research advises students in finding faculty to work with, as well as how to contact these faculty members. They also have various funding opportunities for research expenses, summer support, and travel grants for research conferences.  

Links to departmental Research pages:

UVM Life Science Faculty accepting Undergraduate Researchers for Summer & Fall 2024

The following faculty may invite an undergraduate researcher to join their lab next semester if the student's interests and abilities align with the lab's projects.  Interested students should contact the faculty to discuss this possibility. Faculty not on this list may also accept suitable students.  If you've found a faculty member to work with, contact Dr. Emily Mikucki (Emily.Mikucki@uvm.edu), the current biology department Research Coordinator, to set up credit.

Research LabDepartmentFaculty ContactProject Notes
Insect Agroecology & Evolution LabPlant & Soil Science

Dr. Yolanda Chen


2-3 openings; research centers on the ecology and evolution of insect-plant interactions in agriculture. 

To apply: send resume, transcript, and a cover letter stating why you are interested in the lab. 

Catamount R&DPharmacology

Dr. Gerald Herrera


Research: Examining sensory physiology of the lower urinary tract using transgenic animal models, confocal fluorescence live cell microscopy, electrophysiology, and other techniques.

UVM ImmunofoundryBiomedical Engineering / Surgery

Dr. Dev Majumdar


The Majumdar lab works on next generation mRNA therapeutics, next generation serology techniques, and SARS-CoV-2. The first term in the lab will involve assisting other projects and gaining experience with techniques at 10h/week; meeting attendance required for first term (3-5pm Fridays). Openings limited to Freshman/Sophomore students planning to pursue self-directed project at 10h/week for subsequent terms, leading to a senior thesis (15+h/week). Students may work on any project in engineering immunity/SARS/mRNA therapeutics they would like to, and will be given a project which they will ultimately lead.

Janssen LabPathology and Laboratory Medicine

Dr. Yvonne Janssen-Heininger


The Janssen-Heininger laboratory examines the biological and biochemical processes that lead to scar formation (fibrosis) in the lung. This is a devastating disease that kills people 3-5 years after diagnosis. In our laboratory we grow organoids (mini-lungs) or create precision cut lung slices and examine the interplay between different cell types to investigate disruptions in intercellular communication that occur once a scar begins to form. We are welcoming motivated students to contribute to our vibrant research program.

von Wettberg LabPlant & Soil Science

Dr. Eric Bishop von Wettberg


Two openings:

1) work on our ongoing NSF-funded kernza trial, as part of the New Roots for Restoration project.  Work will involve some field sampling at the UVM hort farm, possibly harvests at Meach Cove Farm, and some end of season laboratory work and analysis.

2) help with DNA extractions and associated analyses as part of a few running soil microbial diversity projects.  One project examines soil biodiversity across pastures in Vermont; another examines the impacts of the three sisters on soil microbial diversity.


Outside Opportunities

Finding a summer internship or job associated with a research project is a great way to gain field or lab experience.  University researchers as well as state, local, and federal government agencies need many hands during the field season.  Peruse these job lists for an opportunity near your home town - or far from it!

The National Science Foundation funds hundreds of Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REUs) each year, which are paid, housing-provided summer opportunities with a sponsoring University, to participate in the active research of one of their faculty members.  With guidance, REU students will typically conduct an individual research project that will be completed over the course of the summer.   

Undergraduate Research Opportunities List: A collection of nation- and world-wide internship, REU, job, and field course opportunities in biological science research, geared toward undergraduate students.  Some opportunities may be eligible for college credit.  Opportunities primarily posted from the ECOLOG listserv from the Ecological Society of America.


Earning Credit for Internships

UVM students can earn credits for qualifying internship experiences completed outside of UVM, whether during the academic year or in Summer.  These are organized through a student's college or department: College of Arts & Sciences (www.uvm.edu/cas/arts-sciences-internship-courses), College of Agriculture & Life Sciences (www.uvm.edu/cals/internships-cals), Rubenstein School for the Environment & Natural Resources (www.uvm.edu/rsenr/rsenr_internship_program). 

Summer interns in the Burlington area may be able to live on campus (www.uvm.edu/eventservices/intern-housing).

student with research poster

Scholarships for Undergraduate Researchers


Find internships that match your interests and career goals through your college: CAS or CALS, the UVM Career Center, or talk to your faculty advisor.  New Communities of Practice mentored group internships are being offered through CAS.

The Biology Department has a designated Internship Advisor: Dr. Emily Mikucki.  

Vermont EPSCoR also offers BREE internships doing Lake Champlain research.

First-Year Life Science Scholars

Incoming first-year students can apply for the College of Arts & Sciences' Liberal Arts Scholars Program, a living-learning experience.  The Life Science theme includes undergraduate research on a biological topic of the students' choice.

research lab