hydrogen orbitals


The IGERT SURE (Summer Undergraduate Research Experience) was a great success this year. After receiving 20 + applications, we narrowed the group down to 7; 2 of which were University of Delaware present students and 5 who were external. In keeping with the interdisciplinary nature of the program, we were also fortunate enough to have the seven students representing 4 of the 7 disciplines that the IGERT draws its graduate students from.

This year our students on the SURE were:

  • Melissa Forand from Roger William’s University, Rhode Island worked in the Mechanical Engineering Department
  • Sarah Laufer from the University of Maryland worked in the Mechanical Engineering Department
  • Natalie Dawley from the University of Virginia worked in the Materials Science Department
  • Ellen Reifler from the University of Virginia worked at the Institute for Energy Conversion
  • Brian Reindl from the University of Florida worked in the Materials Science Department
  • Parag Jalan from the University of Delaware worked in the Chemical Engineering Department
  • Derek Falcone from the University of Delaware worked in the Chemical Engineering Department, and
  • Rebecca Roelofs who is starting as a Freshman at Swarthmore College worked in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department.

Throughout the ten week summer session the students either worked with a member of faculty on the IGERT or a graduate student in one of the IGERT Faculty labs. They were provided with different projects to work on and at different times during the summer were given the opportunity to present their work at various SURE functions. Their summer experience culminated in them presenting their work at the IGERT Energy and Sustainability Conference 2009 which was held between 9th and 12th August.

The IGERT SURE prides itself on allowing the students to gain research, technical and social experience throughout the summer. To this end there are numerous ‘informal’ gatherings during which time the students got to meet other members of the IGERT, forge friendships with members of the Chemical Engineering REU and meet with various faculty members.

Other activities that the students got up to included ten pin bowling, ultimate Frisbee, attending presentations on writing good abstracts and preparing good posters, participating in the solar car races (run by Engineering Cool Stuff Camp), technical presentations on Fuel Cells and PV and visiting numerous sites so that they could get industry experience. These site visits included, GE Solar, DuPont, Exxon Mobile and Air Liquide.

The summer was a great success and the students thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Many of them mentioned that they would be interested in attending UD for graduate school which is a definite indication of the programs success.

Hopefully we’ll have an even better summer next year – the planning has already begun…

Thanks to everyone who helped make it a success this year!

Mo Bremner
IGERT Program Coordinator


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Funding provided by the National Science Foundation