REU Site for Meeting the Grand Challenges in Engineering

This three year Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Site for Meeting the Grand Challenges in Engineering at Duke University offers a cohort of ten undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds the opportunity to engage in innovative, cutting-edge research in engineering. This REU site aims to increase the number of students from underrepresented backgrounds that pursue graduate studies in engineering fields, and to train the next generation of engineers equipped with the skillset to tackle grand challenges. These grand challenges consist of fourteen complex tasks defined by the National Academy of Engineering that must be addressed in order to ensure the resiliency and sustainability of the world's population through five thematic focus areas: energy, environment, health, national security, and learning. This site will provide life-changing experiences for the REU students that will reinforce their interests in the engineering profession and also help them define their professional concentration. Each summer Duke University will host a 9-week REU program that consists of full-time interdisciplinary research under the supervision of a faculty member in one of four departments within the Pratt School of Engineering: Biomedical Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science. Research projects will be organized in five categories: Energy, Environment, Health, National Security, and Learning. The students will participate in meetings pertaining to their research project team and REU workshops for professional development. The latter will include (but are not limited to) training in communication and technical writing, GRE training, the graduate school application process, scientific presentations, and ethical conduct in research. Participants will be supported in publishing their results in journals and presenting their findings in professional conferences. The research projects of the participants will be posted online, creating a forum for ongoing dissemination of the discoveries and achievements resulting from this REU program.

Awarded By

  • National Science Foundation



  • $287,478.00


  • May 15, 2017 - April 30, 2020