How to Apply

Review of applications has begun, but we will accept more applications until all positions are filled.

Applications are due February 16, 2015. In addition to the online application, which includes an essay, you should send transcripts (unofficial are fine) and request one letter of recommendation from a professor familiar with your academic performance. For full consideration, all application materials must be received by February 16, 2015.

Requirements for admission include:

  • US Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Enrollment in a community college, college or university with graduation expected no sooner than December 2015. Applicants from the University of Kansas will not be accepted except under extenuating circumstances that preclude attending an REU at another institution.
  • Majoring in natural sciences, mathematics or computer science, with an interest in biology
  • A cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher

Your completed application includes:

  • Complete the online application form. This includes an essay that should be written, edited and uploaded as a .pdf. Prepare the essay before starting the application. See below for details about the essay.
  • A copy of all your undergraduate transcripts emailed to Unofficial transcripts are fine.
  • One letter of recommendation from a professor, lab instructor or supervisor in any science, technology, engineering or mathematics discipline. Letters from non-scientists will not be accepted. Recommenders should address the applicant's intellectual abilities, level of motivation, ability to work with others and career interests (e.g. research, teaching, medical school, etc.). Please ask your recommender to email the letter to before February 16, 2015.

If email is not possible for any of the above, send documentation via regular mail, for arrival by February 16, 2015, to:

Ms. Dorothy Johanning, REU Coordinator
Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
University of Kansas
1200 Sunnyside Ave.
Lawrence, KS 66045

Questions about the application process should be addressed to


Your essay should address the following questions:

  • What are your career goals?
  • How will participation in this program assist you in achieving your career goals?
  • What relevant courses have you completed?
  • Do you have any prior research or work experience relevant to this program?
  • Why are you interested in the research projects of each of your selected mentors?
  • Discuss the publications that you reviewed for each selected mentor.  What was the important message that you took from each paper?

The essay is the most important part of the application. Thus you need to pay careful attention to your writing, including proofreading. For tips on how to write an outstanding personal statement, see the Eduers website ». You should ask the individual that is writing the letter of recommendation to review your statement both for advice and so that person is familiar with your personal goals and may comment on your commitment to the program.

Applicants may use the mentors’ webpages and/or Google Scholar to find recent publications of the selected mentors. The selection committee understands that you may not be able to understand the papers completely, but will look favorably on your effort to explain what you read and how the research interests you.