LUMCON's Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program, sponsored by the National Science Foundation's REU Site Program, offers paid research training experiences in coastal and marine science to six undergraduates during a ten week period between late May and early August of each year. REU participants will conduct independent research projects with guidance from scientific mentors (LUMCON faculty members, post-doctoral associates, and/or visiting scientists) and their research teams. Each student is paired with a scientific mentor based on mutual research interests. The REU program is designed to give students a meaningful, hands-on research experience that takes advantage of state-of-the-art methods and technologies available at LUMCON.
Throughout the program, students will identify a research question, develop and orally present a research proposal, conduct their proposed research project, and gain experience in science communication by presenting results of their project in a manuscript-style research paper and orally at a laboratory-wide research symposium during the final week of the program. In some cases, this paper will form the basis for (or contribute to) a subsequent publication in the scientific literature. REU students will also participate in a series of career and skill-building workshops and field trips throughout the program. REU students are immersed in the LUMCON community and will have the opportunity to participate in seminars, laboratory outreach programs, social events, and more throughout the summer.
In addition to the six NSF REU interns, LUMCON typically supports additional undergraduate interns through a variety of other funding sources. Prospective students are encouraged to contact faculty members directly to see what additional opportunities they may have available this summer. Each summer, the LUMCON University Education program offers several undergraduate/graduate level field courses. REU participants will have plenty of opportunities to interact with these other students as well as graduate students and visiting scientists in residence over the summer providing an even richer REU experience.
REU program research areas vary year to year, but include Gulf Oil Spill impacts, benthic ecology, biogeochemistry, coastal geology, coastal hypoxia, coral reef biology, ecosystem ecology, fisheries and aquaculture, phytoplankton ecology, and wetland science. Please see the 2014 LUMCON REU Mentors and Project Opportunities webpage for a list of the summer 2014 mentors. You should also check out 2011, 2012, 2013 or 2014 REU student projects.
Stipends and Other Financial SupportInterns pay no facility fees or tuition charges and receive:
Academic CreditStudents participating in REU internships are often eligible to receive academic credit from their home institutions. Program participants may be interested in exploring this possibility.
How to Apply
About LUMCONThe Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium (LUMCON), located in Cocodrie, LA, was formed in 1979 to coordinate and stimulate Louisiana's activities in marine research and education and is situated within a dynamic coastal habitat that inspires a myriad of research questions along a freshwater to saltwater continuum. Participants in the REU program will have the opportunity to examine the impacts of environmental changes on a diversity of ecosystems first hand as a result of LUMCON's unique location: in the upper end of one of Louisiana's larger estuaries (Terrebonne-Timbalier Bay), in the heart of coastal Louisiana's expansive marshlands, close to and between two major rivers (the Mississippi and Atchafalaya) that dictate the coastal ecosystems morphology, processes and functions, north of a productive coastal ocean, and close to the remainder of the Gulf of Mexico (as the ship steams) including its deepest parts. The LUMCON Marine Center houses state-of-the-art oceanographic instrumentation and analytical facilities, a fleet of coastal and oceanographic research vessels, the leading marine science library in Louisiana, and sits within an ongoing evolution of coastal habitats, a new delta and a degrading delta, large areas of coastal erosion and wetland degradation, a hurricane-impacted landscape, opportunities and challenges for coastal restoration and flood control, a changing coastal ocean ecosystem, abundant living resources, a fishing/transportation/oil and gas production nexus, and a unique social and cultural milieu.
LUMCON faculty and their research teams focus on a variety of related research themes across these diverse habitats, including river/ocean interactions, coastal productivity, delta formation and degradation, human and environmental impacts (including the immediate and long-term impacts of the recent Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill), and organismal ecology. LUMCON's setting combined with expertise of the faculty and mentor pool provide a unique opportunity for REU students to participate in a scientific research and professional mentoring program that interfaces fundamental research questions in dynamic coastal ecosystems to science-based policy and management activities.
This REU site is funded by the National Science Foundation's Division of Ocean Sciences (OCE- 1063036). The cognizant Program Director for this REU site is Lisa Rom (Program Director, Ocean Education, Division of Ocean Sciences): firstname.lastname@example.org or (703)292-7709. NSF does not handle REU applications; please contact each REU site directly for application information.
Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.