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Mentoring Undergraduates in Interdisciplinary Research (MUIR)

Mentoring Undergraduates in Interdisciplinary Research (MUIR)

The Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment’s MUIR program provides stipends that range from a base award of $5,000 up to $7,500 based on financial need and location cost of living, per VPUE's guidelines and determination, to full-time Stanford undergraduate students to conduct interdisciplinary environmental research for 10 weeks during the summer.  For 2021, juniors and seniors may opt to dedicate the spring as their Flex quarter, per VPUE guidelines, to receive a MUIR program award to complete the research experience during the spring.  In all cases, undergraduates must satisfy the university's requirements for having been enrolled in the quarters prior to commencing a MUIR research fellowship.  Please consult VPUE for further details.
 
Stanford faculty members must apply on behalf of undergraduates, and the Woods Institute invites faculty from all departments to apply.  Fund priority goes to proposals submitted by Stanford Woods Institute affiliated faculty and by faculty who identify a student in their application. Students wishing to initiate a project must approach a faculty member who is willing to apply on the student's behalf.
 
Read about past MUIR summer projects. You can also find more MUIR student photos here.
 
Students who participate as researchers in the program are required to:
 
  1. Enroll in a one-unit course ESS 108 in spring term.
     
  2. Participate in the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education’s Symposia of Undergraduate Research and Public Service (SURPS or ASURPS) by submitting an abstract and creating a poster. SURPS is held in October on homecoming weekend. ASURPS is held in April over Admit Weekend.
  3. Fill out a program evaluation at the end of the program.
     
  4. Attend the lunch seminar series during the summer term (when on campus) that will include lectures by faculty and workshops on poster-making and oral presentations. The seminar series is held in conjunction with the School of Earth, Energy and Environmental Sciences and the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment.
     
  5. Sign a form indicating acceptance of the requirements of the program, including attending the spring course, the summer lunch seminars and presenting a poster at one of the VPUE Symposia.
 
Faculty mentors are required to:
 
  1. Meet at least every other week with the undergraduate mentor to advise and adjust the student’s work plan as needed during the course of the summer.
     
  2. Participate by giving a talk in the summer lunch seminar series or spring course, if invited.
     
  3. Sign a form agreeing to be an active mentor to the undergraduate and to provide a research experience that includes application of research methods, analysis and synthesis of results. The stipends provided under this program are not intended for undergraduates to complete administrative or clerical work, though undergraduates can expect to do some such work in support of their research project.
 
Faculty Applications:
 
Faculty applications should describe the interdisciplinary research planned, the tasks the undergraduate will perform, what the student will glean from the work and the qualifications needed by the student. Applications also should list any researchers other than the applying faculty member with whom the student will interact during the course of his or her research and discuss how much interaction the applying faculty member will have with the student over the course of the summer.
 
Faculty members are strongly discouraged from proposing research projects without first identifying a student to work on the project. If necessary, the Stanford Woods Institute can assist in recruiting potential student applicants, but cannot guarantee a placement. The faculty mentor must interview and select the student to work on the project.
 
The Stanford Woods Institute encourages faculty to cost-share when possible, so that we can accommodate as many students as possible in the program. Please note that the Woods Institute’s MUIR program does not fund research directly related to honors or senior projects or theses. The program is intended to provide students a mentoring opportunity through the course of assisting in faculty research.
 
THE DEADLINE FOR SUBMITTING AN APPLICATION IS WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 27, 5:000PM PST.

Contact Information

Brian Sharbono
Associate Director, Programs 
650.721.2916
sharbono@stanford.edu