REU: Bioenergy Systems

Study Bioenergy! The research of today for the solutions of tomorrow.

For information contact

Dr. Paul Blum
Charles Bessey Professor of Biology

Julie McManamey
REU Support Staff

2016 Bioenergy Systems REU scholars touring Sheldon Power Station.
2016 Bioenergy Systems REU scholars touring Sheldon Power Station.

Application Dates

Nov 15 2016 App opens
February 1 Priority deadline
March 1 App closes
April 1 Decisions complete

Program Dates

June 4 2017 Arrival day
June 5 Program begins
August 9 Program ends
August 10 Departure day

Who should apply

Related fields

  • Biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Plant Science

Applications are encouraged from students with sophomore standing or higher and a GPA of 3.0 or higher.


Participation in the Nebraska Summer Research Program is limited to students who meet the following criteria:
  • U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Current undergraduate with at least one semester of coursework remaining before obtaining a bachelor's degree

See Eligibility for more information.

How to apply

Follow the application steps to submit the following materials.

About the Program

One of the greatest challenges facing 21st-century society is finding a sustainable energy supply. Energy is the basis for a large portion of the global economy and we are currently primarily dependent on nonrenewable fossil fuels. Not only are reserves dwindling, but nonrenewable fossil fuels also contribute significantly to pollution and climate change. With adequate research and proper implementation, plants, algae, and other microorganisms have great potential to help address the energy crisis.

UNL’s Integrated Development of Bioenergy Systems REU is funded by NSF and administered by the School of Biological Sciences. We collaborate with faculty mentors within five departments as well as the Center for Plant Science Innovation to provide diverse research opportunities with laboratories covering a wide spectrum of bioenergy research topics. You are matched with a faculty mentor and participate actively in the design and implementation of a ten-week research project in order to contribute new knowledge to sustainable energy systems.

Bioenergy REU Scholars researching algae as a biofuel
Bioenergy REU Scholars researching algae as a biofuel

Bioenergy seminars, a group writing project and touring a local power plant provide opportunities to exchange ideas with other students, researchers, and faculty. The program offers graduate school and professional development seminars as well as social and recreational activities.  


  • Competitive stipend: $5,250
  • Suite-style room and meal plan
  • Travel expenses to and from Lincoln
  • Campus parking and/or bus pass
  • Full access to the Campus Recreation Center and campus library system
  • Wireless internet access

Learn more about academic and financial benefits.


  • Campus and department orientation
  • Department seminars and presentations
  • Professional development workshops (e.g., applying to graduate school, taking the GRE)
  • Welcome picnic
  • Day trip to Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo
  • Canoe and camping trip
  • Research symposium