The Centennial UCLA Undergraduate Research Week kicked off this week! At this campus wide event, over 1,000 talented undergraduates with direction from their award- winning faculty mentors will showcase their research experience to the community. This is a meaningful time when our students can thank and celebrate the generous donors- alumni, parents, faculty, staff and friends- who ensure every UCLA undergraduate student has research opportunities.Your contribution, regardless of the size, matters not only to further research but to create opportunities for others— one experience, one student, one discovery at a time. Keep reading to learn more!
UCLA is known around the world for being a leader in research. In fact, among our faculty, alumni and researchers are 14 Nobel Prize winners, a Fields medalist and two Turing Award winners. UCLA faculty members don't just teach students about groundbreaking inventions and discoveries; students take part in the research, side-by-side with their professors.
Undergraduate Research Week (URW) is an annual celebration of everything it means to be affiliated with a world-renowned research university such as UCLA. Open to all UCLA undergrads participating in research and creative projects, the week provides opportunities for students to present their own research findings and learn from peers about a variety of topics. Additionally, URW provides a way for UCLA departments, colleges, and programs to showcase student achievements to the campus and broader community.
Over the last 12 years, the number of Bruins who contact the Undergraduate Research Center (URC) seeking scholarships, faculty mentorship, guidance from peers, academic assistance or career advice has grown significantly as more students enroll in research courses.
However, the university resources which fund these undergraduate research and professional development endeavors has not grown at the same pace, which means that the URC is unable to provide funding to all of our high-quality applicants.
And because competition for traditional research dollars from grants and government funding are extremely competitive, philanthropic investments from donors are increasingly important.
UCLA students who conduct undergraduate research can explore and define their career path before graduation, allowing for them to adjust and pivot based on new interests or discovered strengths.
Undergraduate researchers gain a distinct advantage when applying to jobs or graduate school. With references from UCLA's world-renowned faculty mentors in hand, UCLA student researchers graduate with endorsements related to their intellectual abilities, practical skills, and academic potential.
Participation in research or a creative activity can help students find their niche on a campus which can sometimes seem overwhelming. Relationships developed through trial, error, and sustained work together brings a lifelong sense of community to research groups, labs, and teams.