College of Science

MSCI Professor Contributes to Article on How COVID Is Affecting Undergraduate Research Experiences

Dr. Corey Garza uses drones to help bring the outside to those without the means to access the marine environment and provide new pathways for participating in marine conservation (Source: Corey Garza, Instagram)

In a recent article, How COVID Is Affecting Undergraduate Research Experiences, Marine Science Professor and Co-author Corey Garza highlights how undergraduate research internships were able to adapt this past summer and provide their students with an alternative virtual experience during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The National Science Foundation's Research Experience for Undergraduates in the geosciences (GEO REU) has long provided research opportunities for undergraduate students. Earth system science internships often include students working with scientists in the field and in a lab. These internships provide undergraduate students with the opportunity to improve their technical and science communication skills in a unique environment outside of the classroom. Due to the risks of COVID-19, many programs were forced to cancel their internship programs this past summer. Despite these challenges, the GEO REU program found a way to adapt their internships to provide students with an alternative virtual method to participate in these programs.

Members of the GEO REU and the Council of Undergraduate Research community worked together, exchanging ideas and materials and providing a support system for each other, to quickly adapt their programs to a virtual environment. This was done while many of these mentors were also spending hours trying to adapt courses for virtual learning as well. The work that these mentors put in for their undergraduate students can not be overstated.

To read the full story and learn more about just how these amazing mentors were able to adapt their internship programs to allow virtual work, visit the EOS website.