UNH Joins the Council on Undergraduate Research

By Jody Record, Campus Journal Editor
October 20, 2010

UNH has become an institutional member of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), a group that promotes undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship. Founded in 1978, the CUR is a national organization of individual and institutional members representing more than 900 colleges and universities.

CUR began to encourage undergraduate research at primarily undergraduate institutions, and to lobby Congress to provide support for research at these schools.

During the past 15 years, CUR has evolved into an association that represents not only major research universities but small liberal arts colleges as well. It has also expanded beyond focusing on the sciences and has created divisions in the social sciences, arts and humanities. 

With the increase in funding for the Hamel Center for Undergraduate Research, the growth of UNH’s Undergraduate Research Conference into one of the largest and most diverse conferences in the country, and the emphasis of the Discovery Program on inquiry-based learning and a capstone experience, UNH can benefit from institutional membership in CUR, says Donna Brown, director of Undergraduate Research, the Hamel Center for Undergraduate Research.   

“As an individual member of CUR for 15 years, I have benefited immensely from many conversations with dedicated colleagues at other universities about how to promote, improve, and fund undergraduate research,” says Brown. “Now that UNH is an institutional member of CUR, we will be able to take advantage of the Council’s expertise and national reputation to advance faculty research and undergraduate research initiatives on this campus.”

An institutional CUR membership helps colleges and universities with their continued development and support of undergraduate research, offering opportunities for faculty professional development in research and curriculum through institutes and workshops.

Conferences provide opportunities for networking and sharing of ways to encourage undergraduate research and best practices.  The CUR Quarterly and other publications provide information on undergraduate research activities at various institutions.

CUR also provides information on the importance of undergraduate research to state legislatures, private foundations, government agencies, and the U.S. Congress.