Research Opportunities
Research Grants & McCormick Summer Research Award

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Why Apply for a Research Grant?

  • Winning a grant can help fund your research during the summer and the school year.
  • Winning a grant enables you to contribute to cutting-edge research that helps solve today’s complex engineering and science problems.
  • Winning a grant is a great honor that testifies to the undergraduate's knowledge, creativity, and determination.

Grant money is typically split between paying for student salaries and research materials, where the proportions allocated depend upon your adviser.

We strongly advise all students to work with their advisers to apply for grants.

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Grants for McCormick Undergraduates

Deadlines are typically three to six months before the award date, so be sure to apply early.

View our list of Summer Research Programs

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Gateway Research Awards

$1,000 grants are made available to McCormick freshmen or sophomores for the purpose of working under the direction of a faculty member here. This annual competition is offered in the Fall Quarter of every year.

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McCormick Summer Research Awards

McCormick provides awards of up to $5,000 each for qualifying undergraduate summer research. Awards are made on a competitive basis. Only students enrolled in McCormick are eligible. Projects must be mentored by a Northwestern faculty member.

All students awarded a McCormick Summer Research Award will be given a stipend of $4500, intended to defray summer living costs. It is expected that students will devote ~8 weeks of full-time effort to the project. If necessary for the project, students may apply for additional funds (up to $500) to cover research-related expenses. In this case, a budget should be provided explaining how the additional funds are to be used.

To submit your proposal, use this linkThe deadline for submission is 5:00pm, April 1, 2024.

Application Requirements

The faculty mentor must confirm that they are willing to supervise the proposed work. (After submission of your application, faculty mentors will be contacted with a request that they endorse your proposal.)

When you complete the online application, upload a PDF file of the proposal document in the application’s submission window. Please ensure that your proposal is complete before uploading your document; there is no chance to update or revise after submission.

The proposal document must be entirely original written work of the applicant. It should contain:

  • Your name and the project title.
  • An abstract (less than 250 words).
  • A statement of where the work will be done and why the work will produce new knowledge (less than 250 words).
  • A description of the proposed work (less than 750 words).
  • A statement of why the award will be valuable to you (less than 250 words).
  • You may include up to 3 figures, and a list of references. Neither of these are counted against the above word limits.
  • A brief budget explaining how any extra funds requested beyond the base $4500 stipend are to be spent. (It is not necessary to provide any information on personal/living expenses, since this is covered in the base stipend.)
  • A personal resume (less than 300 words).

Awards will be made on both the intellectual merit of the proposed work and the value such an award may add to your education. Priority will be given to (i) students who have not previously received McCormick summer research funding, and (ii) students who have not been awarded funding for this summer from NU’s Office of Undergraduate Research. Awards are typically announced in the first 1-2 weeks of May.