The Faculty Mentor Summary Form for URSA Engage 2023/2024 is open now and will close on October 15th at 11:59pm.

Application Timeline

Student applications are due December 8, 2023 and notification of awards will be sent in late January. Awardees are expected to engage with their projects for an average of 5 hours a week for the 15-week duration of the project (mid-winter 2024 to the end of spring 2024). 

Important Considerations for Selecting Students

Here are some important considerations:

  • How many students can I accept? Typically colleges do not fund more than 3 students per faculty, any request over three students needs to be approved by department/college leadership. Please email us if you have questions about this. We strongly recommend that you do not let more students apply than you think you can effectively mentor.
  • What if I have a lot of student interest? Students can only submit one application. If you do not have room for the student, or think the student’s interests do not align with your own, let them know ASAP so they can find another URSA Engage mentor to apply with.
  • What happens after I select students for my group? After meeting with potential students please communicate with them if you will or will not accept them into your group. Students will then need to apply to the URSA Engage Program application form. They are not able to submit the application without your final approval.  
  • Can I help students fill out their application? Please note that faculty mentors can help students formulate ideas in their applications, but the applications need to be written in their own words. Faculty mentors will be able to review students responses in the final application submission. 
  • What is the review process? After all applications have been submitted, we score students solely on their responses to questions on the student application. Therefore, we cannot guarantee the number of students you will end up mentoring. Students and faculty find out who is accepted late-January.
  • What are the requirements for meeting with students? Faculty mentors of URSA Engage awardees will need to meet with URSA Engage awardees at least once a week, or 2-3 times a quarter if a graduate student or post-doctoral scholar is available to meet with the mentee at least once a week. This program is designed for early-career undergraduates, and quality mentoring is our highest priority.
  • Who is an eligible mentor? Only academic faculty and professional faculty can be eligible mentors. Graduate students and post-doctoral scholars are not eligible to serve as the primary mentor submitting the application but may mentor URSA Engage awardees along with the primary faculty mentor.
  • Is there a faculty monetary incentive? This year, there will no longer be funding available to support faculty for project-related expenses, instead this money will go directly towards paying students to help with ongoing inflation and high cost of living.
  • What are the final products students need to complete? Students are required to present their work at the Spring Poster Showcase, the Fall Virtual Showcase, or another approved professional conference. This can happen up to when they graduate.

First Steps

  • Faculty who would like to mentor an URSA Engage student(s) will express their interest by submitting a Mentor Summary Form.

  • Faculty Mentor summaries will be posted on the URSA webpage for students to see. Once summaries are posted, students will begin to reach out to you using the contact information you provide.

  • Students cannot apply to the program unless they have a faculty member who is committed to mentoring them if they are selected for the program. As students begin to reach out, you will need to decide how many (and which) students you will allow to apply to the URSA Engage Program under your mentorship. 

Call for Professional Faculty

The URSA Engage Program includes all types of faculty members. A major goal of the program is for students to learn basic research skills (e.g. designing surveys, writing literature reviews, navigating IRB, synthesizing data, analyzing data, drawing conclusions, writing reports/grants, collaborating, etc.). We define research broadly as “the creation of new knowledge and/or the use of existing knowledge in a new and creative way so as to generate new concepts, methodologies and understandings.” Some may disagree with this definition, but if there’s a time to be flexible about how we define research, that time is now. Students who enroll at OSU expect (and deserve) to have experiences beyond the classroom and it is important that our faculty mentors are the ones to help them do it. We would love to have you listed as one of our faculty partners who is ready to mentor an early-career student this school year. 

Examples of projects completed by professional faculty and URSA Engage students in past years:

  • Kim McAloney (EOP Assistant Director of Engagement) worked with a student who explored the role mentorship plays in first-generation college students by using literary resources and personal testimonies.
  • Maureen Cochran (Director of Student Affairs Assessment) & Alex Aljets (Student Success Portfolio Manager) worked with two URSA Engage students who analyzed OSU’s data from the National Survey of Student Engagement.
  • Wiley Thompson (Regional Director, OSU Extension Service) worked with an URSA Engage student who explored demographic, economic, and social shifts in Oregon’s rural communities.
Office of Undergraduate Research