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Undergraduate Research Support Award

Plant Biology Undergraduate Research Support Award 

Plant Biology majors are encouraged to do independent research.  To facilitate this process, we provide a $500 Plant Biology Undergraduate Research Support Award for independent research projects.  


  • The student must be a PBIO major or minor to be eligible for the $500 award.  Other students are welcome to do independent research in Plant Biology faculty labs, but their projects are not eligible for the award.
  • The student must enroll for 4 credits of PBIO 4960R, PBIO 4970R, or PBIO 4980R (see UGA Bulletin for course descriptions).
  • Each PBIO major or minor student is eligible for up to two awards ($500 each).  
  • Each student who accepts the award must agree to present the results of the research at the end of the award as a written paper and/or a poster presentation at a local conference (e.g. Plant Center retreat or CURO symposium).
  • The faculty mentor must be a "regular" or "adjunct" Plant Biology faculty member (
  • The funds are administered by the faculty mentor.
  • To apply for the funds, the student and faculty should submit an application form to the Plant Biology undergraduate coordinator, Dr. Dorset Trapnell (, when requesting permission of Department to register for the independent research class (PBIO 4960R, etc.).  The student will develop a brief description of the research with assistance of the faculty mentor during the first 4 weeks of the independent research semester, to be turned in to Dr. Trapnell.

How to find a project and mentor​?

If you are already working in a Plant Biology faculty lab and want to continue, please contact your faculty mentor and find out if she/he is willing to sponsor you for this award.  If you are looking for new opportunities, then you have at least two options: 1) email Dr. Trapnell ( to set up a meeting to discuss available research opportunities, or 2) contact PBIO faculty directly by sending a brief email inquiry:

  • Ask whether independent research opportunities are available for particular semesters,
  • Attach a brief resume that includes science classes taken so far at UGA, and your current major(s) and minor(s),
  • Keep in mind that different faculty have different expectations for undergraduate researchers.  They may ask you questions by return email or ask to meet in person.  Some labs welcome freshmen, and others prefer students to have completed specific classes.  Some labs expect a one semester commitment and others require a two semester commitment.  Keep in mind that a professor may be interviewing several potential students and that you may want to discuss possibilities with several different faculty members before making a decision.


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