BIOS Set to Welcome REU Students This Fall

2017 BIOS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) student Emma Strand takes pictures of corals in the lab to help estimate total surface area, which will then be used in calculations of respiration and calcification rates.  

This spring, Andrew Peters, director of university programs at BIOS, and Samantha de Putron, assistant director of university programs, received some good news from the National Science Foundation: their Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) proposal was awarded funding for three more consecutive years. This enables eight undergraduates to spend twelve weeks at BIOS each year, with mentorship from a BIOS scientist as they conduct an independent research project. Students hoping to come to BIOS this fall for a fully supported research opportunity (including airfare, stipend, room and board) must apply by May 31, 2018.

Gabrielle Dodson, a 2017 BIOS REU student, lowers the profiling reflectance radiometer into the water off a BIOS research vessel. During her research, she used this instrument to determine the optical properties of water on Bermuda's reefs.

For almost two decades, BIOS’s REU program has provided a springboard to future careers in ocean and atmospheric sciences. While at BIOS, students not only gain new technical skills working in the lab and in the field, but also learn the true meaning of “doing science” as they work their way through experimental design, data collection, and interpreting their results. Alumni often translate their hard work at BIOS into peer-reviewed publications in prominent scientific journals and into poster or oral presentations at scientific conferences. However, the best indicator of the program’s success is what REU students have to say about it themselves:

“The atmosphere at BIOS impressed me the most. I have never been surrounded by so many people that are so dedicated to their interests and so intent on better understanding a niche of our world. Living with fellow interns who are working just as hard as I was and immersing themselves into fascinating research they loved was so awe inspiring. Being at BIOS really shows you what science is all about and I am so appreciative for that.” – Gabrielle Dodson REU 2017

“The REU program at BIOS was everything I hoped for and more. I learned more about the scientific process than I ever anticipated. In addition, my project has opened up so many doors for opportunities such as publication and presenting at conferences that I never anticipated getting the opportunity for as an undergraduate. The REU program helped me confirm that I am in the correct field and solidified my decision to enroll in a graduate program in the near future.”   Katherine Hudson REU 2016

“The NSF REU at BIOS is an amazing experience. The program offers a great way to immediately immerse yourself into science, and it is done in a way that really helps you understand how it works." – Elijah Rodda REU 2016

“My internship was the best learning experience I have ever had. I gained so much real-world experience and learned so much that they can't teach you in a classroom. I'm more passionate about a career in science than I ever have been.” – Alex Lundberg REU 2017

Visit for more information or to download an application.

Funding for this REU site is provided by the National Science Foundation’s Division of Ocean Sciences located in Arlington, VA. Award number OCE-1757475. The NSF contact for this program is Elizabeth Rom. NSF does not handle REU applications; please contact each REU site directly for application information.