Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program – UIUC Students Only


UROP Students

NASA’s Illinois Space Grant Consortium (ISGC) is happy to announce that its 20th Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP) will take place this coming summer. UROP is a program designed to cultivate and support research partnerships between University of Illinois undergraduates and faculty members. All projects focus on NASA-related science and/or engineering research.  We would like to invite highly-motivated undergraduates with a GPA of 3.0 or higher to apply to participate in UROP.

We envision this program to involve about 20 University of Illinois undergraduate students who will:

  • Contribute actively to an intensive research project for 10 weeks (40 hours per week) over the 2023 summer;
  • Participate in a weekly seminar series (presentations on research ethics, technical writing, and preparing presentations) organized by the Summer REU committee throughout this summer;
  • Write an abstract, create a presentation, and present the outcome of their research activities at a one-day symposium at the end of summer or beginning of the fall semester.

We believe this program provides a unique opportunity for students to become involved in NASA-related STEM research activities.

The selected students will participate in research activities for 10 weeks between May 15 and August 4, 2023, under the supervision of a faculty member and their graduate student(s). Your faculty mentor sets the start and end dates, but we expect you to commit to 10 weeks of intensive research. The program is supported by the NASA Space Grant and faculty contributions. Students will each receive a total maximum of $5,000 in support.  Students are expected to be in the lab for approximately 40 hours per week.


The research project descriptions submitted by the faculty are listed below. Please note the Student Background section for knowledge and skills required or preferred.


  • Current student at University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign
  • Highly-motivated undergraduate student
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher 
  • Provide current transcript
  • Complete the application


  • November 15, 2022 – Student Application Opens
  • February 6, 2023 – Student Application Closes
  • March 20, 2023 – Offer letters sent to students
  • March 31, 2023 – Students accept or decline the offer (Faculty/Mentor will be informed immediately)
  • April 14, 2023 – Student stipends and appointments established
  • May 15 or 22, 2023 – UROP starts
  • July 28 or August 4, 2023 – UROP ends (flexible upon Faculty/Mentor approval)
  • August or Early September 2023 – UROP Symposium

HOW DO I APPLY? The application opens on November 15, 2022.

  1. Complete and submit the application form. For your initial entry into the application, click on”Create new account” to start the application.  Enter information into the COMMENTS SECTION of the UROP application form that will aid in the selection process; information such as relevant work experience, leadership activities, computer languages, etc. References given in the application will be contacted by UROP staff IF a recommendation letter is needed.
  2. All application materials are submitted through the online site; this includes your resume and transcript/academic history. Transcripts/Academic Histories should be PDF documents. You do not have to submit an official transcript, but the document does need to include your GPA.

Completed application form WITH transcripts/academic histories are due by February 6, 2023.

In some cases, an interview may be arranged between the student and faculty mentor before the final selection is announced.

Program Requirements:

Attend Undergraduate Research Summer Seminar Series lectures (at least eight during the summer).

Complete the pre- and post-program surveys.

Participate and present at the UROP symposium at the end of the summer. Submit an abstract and create a 10-12 minute presentation on your summer research activities. Tips on how to write an abstract can be found here.

As part of NASA’s requirements for awards, UROP students will be required to participate in a longitudinal tracking program. Student participants will be contacted in the future for information regarding any publications or proposals that result from the student’s research experience. This tracking also determines the long-term benefits of the NASA Space Grant Program.

If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact:

Heidi Bjerke
Senior Coordinator, Illinois Space Grant Consortium

2023 Projects

Click on the project title for full details.