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Nsf Reu Site Program In Membrane Applied Science And Technology

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2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

ChE Department and Faculty Issues

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.968.1 - 10.968.15

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Paper Authors

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Gerri Burke

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William Krantz

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Joel Fried

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1313

NSF-REU Site Program in Membrane Applied Science and Technology

Gerri L. Burke, William B. Krantz, Joel R. Fried

Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, OH 45221-0012


The Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Site program is one of the oldest and most successful NSF initiatives. Active research experience is an effective way to encourage qualified undergraduates to undertake graduate studies. This paper describes a very successful multi- disciplinary REU Site program at the University of Cincinnati (UC) whose focus is membrane science and technology. During its first two years, this program received 214 applications, made 24 awards, and involved 19 faculty drawn from nine departments and programs spanning four colleges; 50% of the awards were to women and 25% to underrepresented minorities; none of the awardees were UC students. This paper describes the administration, financial provisions, planning, and components of this ten-week summer program. Emphasis is placed on the uncommon features of this REU program that include the following: linkage to the NSF I/U CRC for Membrane Applied Science and Technology (MAST) and NSF Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program; inclusion of freshman and non- engineering students; effective inter-college participation; strong ethics component; timely program evaluation; technical papers competition; and financial support to present a subsequent paper at a regional or national meeting. Metrics of the program’s effectiveness along with student evaluations and comments on the program are also given.

1. Introduction

1.1 The NSF REU Program:

The goal of the NSF REU program is “…to expand student participation in all kinds of research − whether disciplinary, interdisciplinary, or educational in focus − encompassing efforts by individual investigators groups, centers, national facilities and others.” 1 The NSF REU program has two components: supplements to new or on-going NSF research grants; and, REU Site Grants based on a proposal to support a larger number of students on projects having a well- defined focus. NSF encourages REU Site programs to involve students from institutions where research programs are limited. REU students must be either U.S. citizens or permanent residents. A significant number of the REU students should be from outside the host institution.

An REU Site program typically involves participation of 10−15 students and is funded at a level of approximately $100,000 per year, usually for a period of three years. Renewal proposals from

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

Burke, G., & Krantz, W., & Fried, J. (2005, June), Nsf Reu Site Program In Membrane Applied Science And Technology Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon.

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