Student Research

How can you get involved in research?

First, do well in your classes. If your GPA is below 3.0, you should be concentrating on academics. Then, go knocking on doors.

You can find out what faculty members are working on by consulting the Research section of the Physics website. Professors are usually happy to spend a few minutes with you to talk about their research, whether or not they have a position available at the moment.

Available positions can be quite variable and different research groups are looking for different skills at different times. If professors get to know you, they can keep you in mind for openings. The Society of Physics Students is now working to maintain a list of available research positions.

Interior of physics lab desk in Jorgensen Hall


The most important part of my education was gaining experience as a researcher. I learned many skills that make me a useful member of a research group. I also gained experience in mentoring younger students and teaching them the skills I learned as a young lab member. Cameron Bravo Class of 2013

Fund your research through UCARE

Andrew Schultz and Roshan Bengali

Undergraduates may receive funding for their research through a special program designed specifically to allow students to work one-on-one with faculty. The Undergraduate Creative Activities and Research Experience (UCARE) provides undergraduates with a stipend of $2,400 over the academic year or summer for a commitment of certain hours and expectations determined by the UCARE program.

Current Physics & Astronomy UCARE Recipients

Al-moatasem Al-hinaai

Tunneling electroresistance in ferroelectrics

Faculty sponsor: Alexei Grouverman

Roshan Bengali

Ultrafast Imaging with Electron Diffraction

Faculty sponsor: Martin Centurion

Alex Clough

Neutrino Detection and Analysis

Faculty sponsor: Ilya Kravchenko

Andrew Fanning

Comparison of Computational Models of Ferroelectric Crystal Structures through Piezoelectric and Electro-Optical Measurements

Faculty sponsor: Stephen Ducharme

Jesse Kruse

Measurement of Anthropogenic Radio Noise for the Askaryan Radio Array Experiment

Faculty sponsor: Ilya Kravchenko

Jenica Lesser

Satellite Wakes in the Encke Gap

Faculty sponsor: Rebecca Harbison

Vida-Michelle Nixon, Nathan Ray

Manipulation and Characterization of Beams of Relativistic Electrons

Faculty sponsor: Matthias Fuchs

Aashish Subedi

Study of the Magnetoelectric Interactions between an Organic Ferroelctric and a Transitional Metal Ferromagnet

Faculty sponsor: Shireen Adenwalla

Ben Sukup

Measuring Temperature- and Frequency-Dependent Polarization of the Ferroelectric Material Diisopropylamine-Iodine

Faculty sponsor: Stephen Ducharme

Haopeng Zhang

Use Atomic Force Microscope to Examine the Surface Morphology of Organic Film

Faculty sponsor: Xiaoshan Xu

Research Experiences for Undergraduates Outside of the University

National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates

This site allows students to choose from one of 19 topics, such as Physics, Astronomical Sciences, and Materials Research. There is also a search function that accepts keywords and choice of states for over 170 programs. Summer REU programs typically have deadlines in February and March and selection in March and April.

Department of Energy Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internships (SULI)

Over 600 internships at 17 DOE Laboratories

Department of Defense STEM Internships

Programs ranging from the Air Force Rome Laboratory to the NSA. Over 40 programs. DOD Pathways Programs include internships for current students and recruiting for recent graduates interested in civilian careers with the DOD.

American Physical Society Internships and Fellowships

The Internships and Fellowships-American Physical Society page has programs that are not listed at any of the above sites, such as the LIGO Institute, The Smithsonian Minority Awards and Internships, and the SRI International, and more.

NASA

NASA Internships, Fellowships, and Scholarships include a wide range of opportunities for summer and academic year internships with NASA Programs. NASA Pathways Programs include internship and recruitment opportunities potentially leading to careers with NASA.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates at Nebraska

Lab interior with instruments on the table and in cabinets

Nebraska offers a number of research opportunities for undergraduates from around the nation to participate in summer research. These Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) allow students to work one-on-one with faculty. Students receive a stipend and other benefits in exchange for their research. See REU home pages for details about particular experiences.