REU Program Student Application

Independent Field Research in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior at Mountain Lake Biological Station

Application Deadline: February 20

Three components of this application require advanced preparation:

  1. A one-page (600 word) essay written by the applicant, and pasted into the application form. The essay should stress (a) past experiences that qualify you for this research internship and what you gained from them, (b) your interests and professional goals, and (c) what you hope to achieve by spending the summer at Mountain Lake. If any mentor options or project areas appeal to you, feel free to let us know, and why. 
  2. Courses, Grades, and GPAs. A list of college-level STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) courses and grades is required in the application. Please do list AP or transfer credits even if no grade was awarded. Full transcripts will be requested during final consideration. 
  3. One recommendation from a research mentor, academic advisor, or science instructor who knows you and your potential for research well. Nonacademic or "community" referees (e.g. coaches, religious leaders) are much less valuable. Referees are contacted automatically, provided with your name and email, and a link to the Reference Letter Form when you submit your application. We recommend you arrange for a reference, and tell your referee to expect an automatic request, before submitting this application.

SUMMER 2017 PROGRAM

Personal Information
Addresses
Current Contact Information
IMPORTANT: Your reference letter writer will receive this email address automatically when you submit this form, and use it to link their reference to your application. Make sure it is correct.
Optional Permanent or Alternate Contact Information
Emergency Contact

OPTIONAL: Health, Safety, Comfort, Personal, and Dietary Needs.

MLBS is a remote field station with limited facilities, access, and communications.  Many activities at MLBS occur out of doors in unpredictable and demanding weather and physical conditions. Some modern conveniences are unavailable. Emergency medical response time is 30 minutes or more. Please indicate here (or contact us at 540-626-7196 or mlbs@virginia.edu) any medical, dietary, or personal needs that may require special consideration or accommodation (e.g. disability, medication storage, life threatening allergy, personal comfort needs).

Please also feel free to tell us anything else about yourself we might find useful in providing for your safety, wellbeing, and comfort at the Station. Here are some SAMPLE things you might want to tell us. We are not asking you to answer these specific questions: Are you colorblind, hearing impaired, or have other constraints that might make work in the field risky or difficult, or make it difficult to identify animals at a distance, or to perform fine scale operations under field conditions? Do you have any constraints or limitations that would prevent you from participating in long hours of field work in remote and rugged locations? Are you willing to handle and manipulate (safely of course) live or dead animals (e.g. small mammals, amphibians, reptiles, adult and nestling birds)?

Program Application Material

Eligibility and Expectations: Undergraduate student participants supported with NSF funds in an REU Site program must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents of the United States. An undergraduate student is a student who is enrolled in a degree program (part-time or full-time) leading to a baccalaureate or associate degree. Students who are transferring from one college or university to another and are enrolled at neither institution during the intervening summer may participate. High school graduates who have been accepted at an undergraduate institution but who have not yet started their undergraduate study are also eligible to participate. Students who have received their bachelor's degrees and are no longer enrolled as undergraduates are generally not eligible to participate. Students graduating in the May before the program are not eligible. Put simply, only applicants who are returning to an undergraduate program after the summer REU program are eligible.  In addition, as a REU researcher you are expected to be in residence at the Station for the full ten weeks of the program. Special scheduling needs (eg. short trips away) can often be accommodated if raised in advance and agreed to by the research mentor and program coordinator. Field biologists often work long and irregular hours six or seven days a week. REU program participants must agree to the same. Commuting is not permitted. It is also important to consider that field work is often physically strenuous and demanding. Program participants need to be physically fit and willing to embrace physical labor, demanding hiking, and long hours in the field in all weather conditions.

Please agree to these criteria by checking the box below. Agreeing is a requirement of program participation, and for submission of this application form.

 

Please list college-level STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) courses along with grades. Do include AP or transfer credits even if no grade was awarded. Full transcripts will be requested during final consideration.
Please paste in a one-page essay (600 word limit). The essay should stress (a) past experiences that qualify you for this research internship and what you gained from them, (b) your interests and professional goals, and (c) what you hope to achieve by spending the summer at Mountain Lake. If any mentor options or project areas appeal to you, please feel free to let us know here, and why. 

Recommendation:

A reference letter from one research mentor, academic advisor, or science instructor who knows you and your potential for research well is required. Nonacademic or "community" referees (e.g. coaches, religious leaders) are much less valuable. Referees are contacted automatically, provided with your name and email, and a link to the Reference Letter Form when you submit your application. We recommend you arrange for a reference, and tell your referee to expect an automatic request, before submitting this application. Please make sure YOUR and THEIR email addresses are correct on this form. Remember to check with your referee near the deadline to make sure the recommendation gets submitted. Recommendations submitted up to a few days after the deadline will be fine.  Missing letters will prevent consideration of the application.

Agreement Respecting Confidentiality:
Please check the box below if you agree to waive access to the recommendation submitted by your referee under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy act of 1974.

Other Information Useful in Project Placement and Mentor Assignment

Conceptual Areas of Interest:

Please list your top three areas of interest, in order, from the pull-down lists.

Taxonomic Areas of Interest:

Please list your top three areas of interest, in order, from the pull-down lists.

Travel and Availability:
Sometimes the dates of particular research projects do not exactly match the standard dates of the program. Please indicate the earliest date you could arrive at Mountain Lake if an early start was required.

Demographic Information Required by the NSF
The National Science Foundation requires that we report these demographic data on each program applicant. Ethnic and racial definitions are defined by the NSF. However, providing these data is not a requirement for application to this program (except for Citizenship, which IS a requirement of the application). Confusing enough? In other words, you are free to skip demography items under Citizenship if you prefer. It will not impact your application.
Your Mountain Lake exposure so far...

Thank you very much!

  • Remember to follow up with your letter writer to ensure your application is complete. Recommendations submitted up to a few days after the deadline will be fine.

  • Incomplete applications (without at least essays, course experience, or reference letters) will not be reviewed.

  • Application review takes several weeks. During that time you may be contacted by potential mentors wishing to learn more about you. Offers are made by the REU Coordinator in March. For questions about the program or your application please call 434-982-5486 or email mlbs-reu@virginia.edu.

  • Mountain Lake Biological Station values diversity and is committed to equal opportunity and affirmative action in all its programs.

Click the submit button below. A confirmation page and automatic email will follow. If you do not get both, your application has not been submitted.