ICRU Research Fellows - Program Information 


What is this program?

The ICRU Research Fellows Program provides funding to current University of Iowa undergraduates in ANY discipline to pursue mentored research/creative work with UI faculty or P&S staff mentors during the academic year and/or summer.  Students and mentors must apply together under a specific project to be eligible.  Students are ineligible to apply without a mentor.

  • Fellowships benefit both students and their mentors.  Typically, a student's specific project stems directly from the mentor's research on a topic that fits within the mentor’s work. 
  • Approximately 150 students are funded each year from all majors including the arts, humanities, engineering, social, and natural sciences.
  • As a student support award, this funding is given as a scholarship directly to the student.  It does not cover research expenses/supplies, nor is it intended to be a reward for time already spent on research.
    • Academic Year funding award - $2,000 (5-10 hours per week)
    • Summer funding award - $2,500 (15-20 hours per week)
  • Applications for the ICRU Fellows Program open in early February (due in March) each year for the following summer or academic year.
    • Please note that unfortunately, ICRU cannot offer Fellows funding at other times during the year.  Applications for funding are only available during the spring semester for the following summer or academic year. .

 Who is eligible for this program?

  • All Faculty or Professional and Scientific Staff are eligible to apply with an undergraduate student.
    • This includes post-doctoral candidates, but not graduate students
  • Only one undergraduate Fellowship per mentor is allowed (a Fellowship may be split between two students), and each student may apply for only one Fellowship per cycle.
  • Eligible students must:
    • Be full-time (12 or more semester hours)
    • Actively seeking an undergraduate degree (in ANY major) from the University of Iowa 
      • Note: Students DO NOT have to be enrolled for credits during the summer.
    • Be in sophomore or further standing at the beginning of the fellowship
      • Students can apply in the spring of their freshman year for the following summer or academic year
    • Return as an undergraduate during the following academic year
      • Seniors graduating in May are not eligible for summer funding after graduation.
    • Have a cumulative UI GPA (not overall cumulative) of 3.0
      • Mentors may apply with students whose GPA falls under 3.0 with a considerable reason addressed in the application
  • SUMMER FELLOWS must not hold any full-time, paid summer funding opportunities.  (This excludes hourly, paid opportunities.)
  • Current ICRU Research Fellows are eligible for future fellowships, but Fellows MUST REAPPLY each cycle.  Fellowships do not roll over. 

What kind of research and creative projects are eligible for funding?

The Research Fellows Program encourages students to learn about the research and creative work process in order to create better future researchers, artists, etc.  ICRU preferentially funds projects that fully engage the student in the work, from contemplation and execution to analysis and presentation of results.  Projects that can lead to an honors thesis, publication, exhibition, performance, or other forms of recognition for the student are given high priority. Strong mentorship (meaning regular student-mentor interaction) is crucial in all cases.  


Do students already have to be involved in research to apply?

No - students do not have to be already involved in research to become an ICRU Fellow.  This program was created to facilitate student/faculty collaboration.  


Does ICRU help place students with mentors?

No - it is the responsibility of the student to find a mentor.  Finding a mentor to work with is a critical part of learning the research/creative process.  Mentors can submit advertisements for students on the ICRU webpage, and students are welcome to check the advertisements on the ICRU webpage, but this is the extent of ICRU's involvement in matching students and mentors.


Can students receive funding for both the summer and the academic year?

  • Yes!  Students can apply with their mentors to receive funding for both the summer and the academic year.  This is commonly seen for projects that are long-term or lead to follow-up projects, though this is not necessary.  REMEMBER: summer and academic year applications must be submitted separately!

Can mentors apply with more than one student?  Can students apply for more than one Fellowship?

Mentors are only granted one Fellow per funding cycle, and students are only granted one Fellowship per funding cycle.

  • Only one Fellowship may be granted per mentor per funding cycle.  Fellowships may be split between two students, however.  
    • ​For example, a split summer fellowship would grant two students $1250 for approximately 10 hours of work per week.  A split academic year fellowship would grant two students $500 per semester ($1000 total), or one student could receive the award during the fall and the other during the spring.
  • ​​If two students are nominated for a split award, each requires a separate application.  Applications offer the ability to indicate a split or a single semester application.

Who submits the application?

  • The faculty/staff mentor is responsible for submitting the application online.  Please read the application instructions ahead of time.
    • Students are expected to work with the mentor to develop the details of the project/application.
  • Students are responsible for submitting the student statement portion of the application. 

What is the time commitment for this program?

ICRU does not require time sheets or other record keeping.  The Fellows program is intended to be flexible, recognizing that Fellows are students first and each project and its time requirements are unique. Hours should be collaboratively determined by the student and mentors.  With that in mind, ICRU suggests:

  • 5-10 hours per week during the academic year.
  • 15-20 hours per week during the summer. 

What happens if the application is selected for funding?  What are the requirements of the program?

  1. Prior to funding being disbursed, faculty and students must complete a research agreement form that outlines the expectations of each party.  These are sent out by email following selection.
  2. Funding is disbursed directly to the student as a refundable scholarship in the early weeks of the semester/summer. 
  3. ICRU will register Fellows for a 0-credit hour, R/W course (URES:3995:0001) to denote participation on the student's transcript.
  4. Fellows are required to present their work at either the Fall or Spring Undergraduate Research Festival (both is also acceptable).
  5. Fellows are required to take part in a research mentee training program during the summer or semester they are funded.  
  6. Fellows may be required to complete a questionnaire from ICRU to assessing their experience as a Fellow and improve the program.

What happens if the application is NOT selected for funding?

We still encourage you to do the research/creative work for academic credit! Look at the Courses, Credit, and Certifications page under the "For Students" tab for more information.


Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (LSAMP) Program

The long-term goal of the LSAMP program is to increase the number of under-represented minority students who enter science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) professions and who earn doctorates in STEM fields.

Students interested in applying for the LSAMP Program should utilize the ICRU Research Fellows Program application.

LSAMP Program details and eligibility information can be found here.


If you have further questions not answered here, please feel free to contact us by email, phone, or in person.  Visit the Contact Us page to find out how!