Gain hands-on experience in your field

Opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students are numerous and diverse, with major research programs in bioengineering, communications and networking, systems research, embedded computing, rotorcraft technology, launch and reentry vehicles, space robotics, intelligent transportation systems, advanced materials, nanotechnology, electronic packaging, and energy systems.

Undergraduate Research Support Opportunities

In an effort to produce more engineering researchers, the Clark School offers undergraduates both informal and formal research opportunities. Informal opportunities are those arranged with individual faculty members, typically through the department director of undergraduate programs. 

If you are a freshman, sophomore, or junior, the Clark School offers a number of formal opportunities across an exceptional array of innovative undergraduate research programs to gain hands-on experience as an undergraduate researcher.

The Scholars Program for Industry-Oriented Research in Engineering (ASPIRE) program seeks to broaden the educational experience of undergraduate engineering students through direct involvement in real-world engineering projects. ASPIRE offers students a unique opportunity to venture beyond the classroom through collaborations with engineering faculty and staff on mutually interesting projects with industry relevance. In addition to its intrinsic educational value, ASPIRE gives students a competitive edge when applying for jobs or graduate study.


The Maryland Engineering Research Internship Teams Program (MERIT) combines cutting-edge, team-based research with technical and educational seminars. Students typically work in teams of two or three and are supervised jointly by faculty members and graduate students.

The RISE Leadership Academy enhances the leadership ability of select students within the engineering college. Students with exceptional leadership potential will be invited to join the academy. Selection occurs in the sophomore year based upon academic performance and leadership qualities demonstrated during their first three semesters of academic study.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) funds a large number of research opportunities for undergraduate students through its Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Sites program. An REU Site consists of a group of roughly 10 undergraduates who work in the research programs of the host institution. Each student is associated with a specific research project, where they works closely with the faculty and other researchers. Students are granted stipends and, in many cases, assistance with housing and travel. Undergraduate students supported with NSF funds must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or its possessions. REU opportunities at the University of Maryland include:

Graduate Research Support Opportunities

Current graduate students and those considering graduate studies in the future can find opportunities for support through the following programs. You can also contact your advisor for assistance with these programs and preparing a competitive application. 
There are a wide array of special programs for graduate students, including graduate research assistantships awarded through departments by individual faculty members, fellowships—including the L-3 Fellowship, Fischell Fellowship, and Citrin Fellowship—and the Lockheed graduate student support program.
In addition, our students regularly apply to and receive support through many national programs.

More fellowship opportunities for graduate students can be found through individual departments and the Clark School's recruitment and scholarship programs.

Students supported on Graduate Research Assistantships (GRAs) participate in research projects funded by grants perform duties under the supervision of a faculty member. Graduate research assistants often work on material that is directly related to their theses or dissertations. A full GRA is a 12-month appointment, and the typical work load is 20 hours per week during the academic year and 40 hours per week during the summer. The assistantship includes a salary, subsidized health benefits, and tuition remission for 10 credit hours per semester as well as eight credit hours for summer.
GRAs are awarded through the department by individual faculty members. Subject to satisfactory performance and the availability of funds, GRAs are renewable each semester.

For more information on research opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, contact:

Robert Briber
Associate Dean of Research
Phone: 301-405-7313