NIU Research Rookies named for 2014-15 academic year

Tyler Stringer
Tyler Stringer

The 2014-15 cohort of Research Rookies has been named.

NIU’s Research Rookies Program links undergraduate freshmen, sophomore, and first-semester transfer students with faculty mentors in their major or area of interest to conduct a small-scale research project.

A total of 49 NIU undergraduate students have been named as Research Rookies for the program’s fifth year on campus.

This year’s cohort represent five undergraduate colleges and more than 25 departments. Faculty mentors include department chairs, Presidential Research Professors and associate deans. Research Rookies have come from as close as DeKalb and as far away as Sydney, Australia.

As a Research Rookie, students will:

  • Learn what research looks like in their field of study.
  • Learn how to write a formal research proposal.
  • Gain experience working alongside talented faculty.
  • Attend professional and academic enrichment activities.
  • Present their work at the annual Undergraduate Research and Artistry Day.
  • Receive a $500 stipend at the completion of the program.

During the 2013-14 academic year, Research Rookies conducted projects across many disciplines including biological sciences, history, physics, sociology and accountancy.

Ashley Kyle, sophomore nutrition and dietetics major, worked with Sheila Barrett on a project titled “Assessment of the Nutritional Quality of the National School Lunch Program and Validation of Photography as a Data Collection Tool.”

Ashley Kyle
Ashley Kyle

“I get to explore my field of study, take advantage of any and all research opportunities, and really learn and make connections,” Kyle said of the Research Rookie experience.

Tyler Stringer, junior physics major, spent his 2013-14 Research Rookies year working on a project dealing with the evaluation of novel X-ray detectors under the direction of two mentors,  Laurence Lurio and David Hedin.

“Being a Research Rookie means being a part of a select group of individuals who are passionate about their fields of study,” Stringer said. “We get an opportunity to conduct research earlier than others as well as closer to the raw research than others. As Research Rookies, we can learn hands-on experience as an undergrad.”

Participating in Research Rookies is the perfect way for highly motivated students to connect with one another as well as with supportive faculty and staff.

Past Research Rookies have gone on to become:

For more information, contact the Office of Student Engagement & Experiential Learning at (815) 753-8156 or ResearchRookies@niu.edu.

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