SGA funds student researchBy Tatum Roessler | 10/08/2014 11:14pm
Students who are interested in starting an undergraduate research project and receiving funding to support their research will have a chance to do so through the Student Government Association.
SGA is planning to award $2,000 worth of grants this month to help fund students' undergraduate research projects.
“The Student Government Association Undergraduate Research Grant intends to provide these students with the money necessary to buy materials, attend conferences and pay for other expenses,” Laura Gregory, vice president of academic affairs, said in an SGA press release.
The grants are not limited to any particular field of research for undergraduate students.
“Your research does not have to be in a lab; it can be any project that seeks to form new knowledge in your area of interest,” Gregory said.
Hannah Zahedi, a senior majoring in biology, received a grant last year from the SGA.
“The grant helped replace some vital parts in our swim tank apparatus that had been broken a few months earlier,” she said.
Zahedi researched the differences between male and hermaphroditic mangrove rivulus, and Ryan Earley was her supervising professor.
“I had a great team to work with and an even greater professor, Dr. Ryan Earley," she said. "He was very excited to hear we got the grant."
Through the grants, SGA is planning to put undergraduate research in the spotlight, said Alan Gambril, director of undergraduate research opportunities.
“Undergraduate research has a tendency to go unnoticed by a large majority of the student body,” he said. "We want the successes and efforts of those involved with research to receive the praise and celebration that they truly deserve."
The grants are also an effort through SGA to get undergraduate students to participate in undergraduate research at the Capstone.
“The University of Alabama encourages students to participate in research and takes great pride in the amount of students who partake in such incredible projects,” Gregory said. "On behalf of the Student Government Association, we want to further this University achievement by assisting students financially with their research undertakings."
SGA plans to recognize students who are currently completing undergraduate research and further their progress by awarding the grants, Gambril said.
“In the long run, our goal is to stimulate undergraduate research efforts and involvement, as well as doing our best to facilitate and reward those already involved in projects of their own,” he said.
In order to be eligible for a grant, students must be in an undergraduate program, be conducting research on their own and be mentored by a faculty member, Gambril said.
“However, there are specific uses of the money that are not allowed. These ineligible expenses can be found listed on the application, which is located on the SGA home page,” he said.