Burruss Hall at Virginia Tech
Engaging in labwork at Virginia Tech
Advice for Students

University Honors, Undergraduate Research Advice


If your application is selected for review, you will be contacted for an interview. The interaction between student and faculty member and/or lab members during this time will be an important part of the process. This is an opportunity for selected students to discuss their potential fit with the goals of the laboratory, current projects in the laboratory, and the student's potential role in the research group. During the interview process it is important for you to try to determine your compatibility with the research group, the specific nature of the work you will be doing, who will be supervising your work, how often you will meet with the faculty member, the hours you have available to work in the lab, what laboratory skills/training will be required, as well as the fit of your area of research interest with the overall goals of the research group.

Virginia Tech Interview Guidelines


What if I have never done research before?

VBI Undergraduate Scholars Program is open to undergraduates with or without an actual research background. All applicants should demonstrate a keen interest in doing work in the area they have applied to work in.

May I choose to work in a specific group or with a specific faculty member?

The online application asks you to identify the specific VBI research group/faculty member that you are interested in working with. Placement in a specific area, however, cannot be guaranteed.

What if I want to pursue a course-credit opportunity, but have never worked with this faculty member before?

If you are interested in a course-credit opportunity, the details of the opportunity must be worked out with the prospective faculty member and the student's home department. It is important to note that there are significant time constraints on successfully arranging a course-credit opportunity. You must be registered for a course-credit opportunity through you own department, and so it is important to start this process well in advance of course registration deadlines. Please take the initiative to contact the faculty member you would like to work with, and set up a time to talk about the course credit opportunity, or you can begin with a non-paid internship, and then, after successfully working with the mentor and/or research group, work out the details for a course credit opportunity following the initial non-paid internship.

What if I submitted my application, but have not heard anything back from the program or the faculty member?

If you have applied to the program, and feel that you have not been responded to in a timely manner, please email Betsy Williams at betsyw@vbi.vt.edu to find out more information.