Research Discovery Program

The Research Discovery Program (RDP) prepares undergraduates academically, professionally, and personally to conduct research at some point during their academic studies at UCI. Undergraduate participants (Mentees) take a class and attend group and individual meetings during winter and spring quarters. Mentees are matched with graduate students (Mentors) to support and guide them through the process.

We are seeking approximately 100 undergraduate students and 25 graduate students from any majors to join us as RDP Mentees and Mentors. 

Mentee Information

Research Discovery Program: Recorded Information Session

What You Will Gain:

  • Mentorship: Mentees receive guidance from a graduate student mentor.
  • Community: Build community at UCI by connecting with fellow undergraduate researchers, graduate students, and faculty.
  • Professional development: Attend workshops on career readiness, research skills, and student researcher and faculty panels.
  • Credit: Mentees enroll in a 1 unit Pass/No Pass class held in person on Tuesdays from 4-5 pm in both winter and spring quarters, and will receive a total of 2 units of academic credit.

Application Deadline: November 20, 2023, at 11:59 pm. The application deadline has passed for the 2023-24 academic year.

Hear from previous participants about their experience in the program:

Details and Requirements

Who Should Apply?

  • First-year UCI undergraduates (freshmen or transfers) from any major. Must be enrolled at UCI through at least spring quarter 2024.
  • Undergraduate students with no previous college or university-level research experience.
  • Students who are committed to diversity and have overcome significant challenges are strongly encouraged to apply!

Program Requirements:

  • Enroll in and successfully complete our 1 unit Pass/No Pass course in both winter and spring quarters. Class will be held in person on Tuesdays from 4-5 pm in winter and spring quarters.
  • Participate in Mentor meetings in both group and individual settings.
  • Attend and volunteer at the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in mid-May 2024.
  • Complete program evaluations.
  • Attend the closing certificate ceremony at the conclusion of the program.
  • Goal: Submit at least one UROP or SURP (summer) proposal as an undergraduate student.

    Application Instructions:

    • Complete and submit the online application by Monday, November 20, 2023, at 11:59 pm.  The application deadline has passed for the 2023-24 academic year.

     

     

    Mentor Information

    What You Will Gain:

    • Mentoring experience: Develop your skills while giving back by mentoring undergraduate students and helping to create a community of researchers.
    • Professional development: Facilitate class discussions and meetings focused on developing Mentees’ research and leadership skills.
    • Funding: Mentors receive $1,500, divided into two equal payments at the end of winter and spring quarters.

    Application Deadline: November 20, 2023, at 11:59 pm. The application deadline has passed for the 2023-24 academic year.

    Details and Requirements

    Who Should Apply?

    • Currently enrolled UCI graduate student through at least spring quarter 2024.
    • Graduate students from any major who have completed the Mentoring Excellence Certificate Program (MEP) within the last two years. Preference is given to those who have not served as a Research Discovery Program Mentor in the past.
    • Students who are committed to diversity and have overcome significant challenges are strongly encouraged to apply!

    Program Requirements:

    • Attend and help facilitate discussion in our 1 unit Pass/No Pass course in both winter and spring quarters. Class will be held in person on Tuesdays from 4-5 pm in winter and spring quarters. Mentors will be expected to attend select class dates each quarter. Exact dates TBD.
    • Lead Mentor meetings with up to 4 mentees both in class and individual settings.
    • Attend and volunteer at the Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium in mid-May 2024.
    • Complete program evaluations.
    • Attend the closing certificate ceremony at the conclusion of the program (if your schedule allows).

    Application Instructions:

    • Complete and submit the online application and your CV by Monday, November 20, 2023, at 11:59 pm. The application deadline has passed for the 2023-24 academic year.

     

    Donor Information

    Help us increase the diversity of students participating in undergraduate research at UCI! Hear from previous participants about their experience in the program.

    See more student testimonials below.

    Contact Information

    Read more about the program on this webpage and contact us with questions:

    Program Information:

    Sharon Parks, UROP Director
    sparks@uci.edu
    (949) 824-5456

    Student Testimonials

    Participating in this program inspired me to talk to one of the Information & Computer Science professors, and we decided to discuss doing research together. Through this program, I met the UROP staff and was able to volunteer at the Undergraduate Research Symposium!

    Alexia Ventura

    After hearing how many resources there were for research with no idea where to start, I joined the Research Discovery Program to learn more about what it truly means to get involved in research and build a strong network of supporters in my research journey!

    Madison Delgado

    My mentor was very supportive and seemed to understand what I was going through. She was the first person in her family to pursue a career in STEM, was of Hispanic background, and was part of the LGBT+ community, which I think helped me a lot.

    Daniela Ramos Rodriguez