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Environmental Signal Transduction: An Interdisciplinary Research Experience for Undergraduates

A Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Site will be established in the Center for Research into Environmental Signal Transduction (CREST) at Western Michigan University. CREST will take an interdisciplinary approach to providing research experiences that will encourage and motivate undergradu-ate students to pursue careers in scientific research. Participants will be recruited regionally throughout the Great Lakes area from colleges where research opportunities are limited and nationally from HBCUs. Applications will be encouraged from individuals under-represented in scientific research: women, minori-ties, and persons with disabilities. A 10-week summer program will (A) provide an independent research experience, (B) offer a discussion series on the process of science, (C) foster discussions on scientific ethics and integrity, (D) create opportunities for interaction, dissemination, and development, and (E) allow for evaluation. Intensive mentored research encounters will model what life is like as a complete re-searcher. The ethics component will be conducted over an electronic conferencing system outside of the students' laboratory research time by a faculty member whose dual doctoral degrees in philosophy and microbiology present unique qualifications for these activities. REU participants will be encouraged to attend weekly research symposia during the middle period of the program and will give a brief talk on work being conducted in the laboratory at the concluding symposium. Students will prepare a research paper toward the end of the period and submit it for review to a mock scientific journal in which the final papers will be published and disseminated. Students also will be encouraged to prepare abstracts for presenta-tion at undergraduate research conferences and at seminars at their home institutions with their faculty mentors. Western Michigan University's outstanding laboratories and instrumentation will be further enhanced by construction of a new science complex to be phased in during 1998 and 1999. The University's libraries, computing services, recreation center, residence halls, and nationally recognized dining facilities offer excellent accommodations for participating students. WMU will contribute the stipend and support costs for one of the ten students to participate each year and five percent of the time and effort of the project co-directors and two REU team members during the academic year.

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The Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Research Inventory is an
interactive, Internet-based, searchable database created as a tool to collect and disseminate
up-to-date information about research projects in the
Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Region.