• Plant biology associate professor Mary Tierney takes student Molly Searway on her first visit to the plant growth chamber in Jeffords Hall.


What Questions Will You Ask?

As a top-ranked, small public research institution, UVM offers endless opportunities for undergraduate students to get involved in meaningful and impactful research. Our faculty have been recognized not only for their excellence in the classroom, but for their scholarly achievements as scientists and researchers. Students participating in undergraduate research work alongside accomplished faculty-scholars gaining practical experience in purpose-driven science and real-world application.

CALS offers several programs focused on providing undergraduate students with research opportunities. Explore below.

Summer Research Opportunities

Agroecology Extension (AX) Summer Research Fellowship

student standing in a crop field holding a handful of freshly picked onionsThe Agroecology Extension (AX) Summer Research Fellowship provides students with funding to participate in summer research in collaboration with mentors engaged in various projects with farms and farmers in the community. The program offers a fully-paid, 10-week research and outreach experience that takes place on campus and on farms throughout Vermont. The program is based at UVM, but students from any U.S. institution may apply. 

Applications open! Deadline: March 4, 2023

Learn more & apply


CALS Life Sciences Leadership Program

two women in labThe CALS Life Science Leadership Program aims to engage and support students who advance diversity in the life sciences (underrepresented racial groups, LGBTQ+, first-generation) to work with CALS faculty on summer research projects. The program goal is to provide opportunities for faculty-student teams to work on mentoring and leadership development across cultural and identity differences. Student-faculty pairs will participate in mentoring workshops throughout the summer of the award.

Applications open! Deadline: March 24, 2023

Learn more and apply


Food Summer Undergraduate Research Funding (SURF)

Sponsored by the Agriculture Research Services of the USDA and hosted by the Food Systems Research Center at UVM, the Food SURF program provides summer research funding for undergraduate students to conduct research centering on the food system. Food SURF is a mentor-based program where undergraduate students work with a chosen faculty mentor to develop a research proposal and conduct the research over the summer. Open to all UVM students. 

Applications open! Deadline: Friday, March 24, 2023

Learn more and apply


NSF / UVM Research Experience for Undergraduates: Crop Diversity and Food & Income Security in East Africa

UVM is the host institution for a National Science Foundation (NSF)-sponsored research program for undergraduate students. The program offers students the opportunity to conduct hands-on interdisciplinary research on the social, ecological and economic contributions of crop diversity to nutrition and farmer livelihoods in Uganda. The program takes place at UVM, but students from any U.S. institution may apply. Eight students are selected each year (program runs each summer from 2021-2023).

Applications open! Deadline: February 28, 2023

Learn more and apply


Gilman T. Dedrick Award - Summer Research Internship in Diversified Agriculture

The Dedrick Award supports an undergraduate student to conduct summer research in diversified agriculture. The award provides $2500 to fund the recipient's research which corresponds with a diversified agriculture topic with a preference for topics that involve animal-related projects. 

Applications open! Deadline: Friday, April 12, 2024 by 5:00 PM EST

Learn more and apply

Academic Year Research Opportunities

Distinguished Undergraduate Research (DUR) Program

student looking at specimen under microscopeOpen to all students in CALS, the Distinguished Undergraduate Research (DUR) Program provides students the opportunity to conduct significant, independent and scholarly research under the close supervision and mentorship of a faculty member. DUR awards are granted to students who have demonstrated superior achievement in original research, and as such, is one of the highest honors conveyed by CALS.

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Agroecology & Livelihoods Collaborative (ALC) Undergradaute Research Fellows Program 

three students working in a greenhouseThe Agroecology and Livelihoods Collaborative (ALC) is a transdisciplinary community of practice at UVM dedicated to the application of agroecology and participatory action research. The ALC offers opportunities for students to join a rich community of faculty, staff and graduate students while gaining high-impact research and experiential learning experience.

Learn more


mortar boardStudent Research Spotlight

Join us inside the Thali Lab to hear from molecular genetics major Danielle Allen '20 who conducted undergraduate research on an essential protein involved in HIV transmission.

students working in a lab


All CALS students have opportunities to conduct research, regardless of their major or career aspirations. The UVM Office of Fellowships, Opportunities, and Undergraduate Research (FOUR) offers an array of valuable resources for students throughout the research process, from identifying faculty mentors and finding funding opportunities to getting their work published.

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More CALS Student Opportunities