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The PCRi Research Experience

Following our live educational programming, students transition to using their new knowledge about research to create a final capstone project. Students are directly matched with a research mentor and supported by biology education directors throughout this month-long process. 


Research mentors are selected from among the most highly-esteemed scholars across the country. Mentors range from being undergraduate students with >2 years of research experience, graduate students in the process of completing a doctorate, or tenured faculty from the country’s top universities. 


Research Mentor-Student Pairing Process:

  • Each research mentor is paired to 2-4 PCRi students.

  • Matchings are made primarily according to similarity in research interests. 

  • Students are asked for preferred backgrounds/identities in mentors and requests are taken into consideration during matching.


Research Mentor-Student Meeting Structure:

  • All mentors meet with students for one hour each week for a total of 4 weeks. 

  • Research mentors are responsible for guiding students through the various elements of the subject-specific capstone projects. 

    • Research mentors will be provided outlines before each meeting with instructions and guiding questions in order to ensure meetings are productive and beneficial.


Safety Measures and Miscellaneous:

  • PCRi biology directors will hold office hours at least five times during the month students are working on their capstone projects. 

    • These spaces will provide the opportunity for frequent check-ins with students about their experience with their mentors.

  • A feedback form is circulated to all students and research mentors halfway through the month and again at the end to ensure everything is going smoothly.

    • Students also have constant access to the PCRi education team through both email and slack. 

  • All research mentors are affiliated with accredited 4-year universities and all undergo background checks to ensure safety.


Check out our PCRi Research Programming to learn about opportunities for Research Mentors and students to remain connected and involved with the Pre-College Research Institute.

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