Chancellor's Undergraduate Research Award Information for Faculty/Research Supervisors

The CURA program is intended to both assist UIC faculty members in conducting their research, scholarship or creative production and to provide a rich and rewarding educational experience for the student employee. Through the program, students receive mentorship and learn important research concepts and skills.

Apply for a CURA for the 2021-22 Academic Year

Faculty members apply for a Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research (CURA) on behalf of a student. To receive funding for a CURA, a student must have demonstrated financial need.

Faculty interested in sponsoring an undergraduate student as a student research assistant through the CURA program are asked to complete an eligibility inquiry form.

Inquiry form for AY2021-2022 CURA Program

  • Using the information provided, the Office of Undergraduate Research will coordinate with the Office of Financial Aid to determine if the student is eligible for the CURA program.
  • The Office of Undergraduate Research will then contact the faculty member by email to share whether or not the student qualifies for funding support for the CURA program.
    • If the student qualifies, a link to an online CURA application will be included in the correspondence to the faculty member.

Criteria and Conditions

  • For students who receive Federal Work-Study (FWS) funding to support their CURA, the student must have accepted the FWS award as part of their current financial aid award from UIC before a CURA can be granted. A student can accept their FWS award through the my.UIC portal by navigating to the Finances tab.
  • Faculty and other principal investigators identify students as prospective research assistants independently or respond to student inquiries through the Undergraduate Research Experience database, conduct their own screening processes, and complete the online application on the students’ behalf, through the link at the top of this page.
  • Students are employed at an hourly rate for a number of hours a week to be determined by the faculty member and his/her department in consultation with The Office of Student Employment. Hourly rates range from around $12.20 to $12.80. View the most recent student employment wage plan.
  • It is not necessary for students to be signed up for research credit to be eligible for the CURA program. Receiving research credit is, however, possible in some situations. See the list of research credit courses. [Note: This list may not be complete.] Students should check with their advisor or the director of undergraduate studies in the sponsoring department to see if it is possible for them to sign up for a research credit course in connection with the research experiences associated with the CURA program. *Important note: In cases where CURA recipients are also signed up to receive course credits for the research experience, additional assignments and assessments must be associated with the research experience. The pay the student receives through the CURA program is in connection with their role assisting with a faculty member’s research or creative production. The course credits are associated with outside reading, preparation, meetings with faculty, and any related assignments and assessments associated with the experience that promote the student’s own learning. The additional work must correspond to the criteria outlined in the course description and the associated number of credits.
  • Applications will be accepted and awards will be granted on a rolling basis until program funds have been exhausted. Faculty should try to submit applications early to ensure that students have the opportunity to register for course credit if they are interested in pursuing this option (i.e., before the tenth day of the semester). Applications submitted after the tenth day of the semester will still be considered if award funding remains–even if the student is unable to sign up for course credit.

Steps and processes from the faculty/research supervisors' side

  1. Faculty who wish to participate must create a brief profile on the URE Web site.
  2. Students may contact faculty members directly via the “URE Email Webform” link that appears at the bottom of the faculty member’s research information page. Faculty may also recruit students through other means.
  3. Faculty correspond directly with the students and determine whom they’d like to hire under the program.
  4. Faculty submit the brief application through the link at the top of this page. (Applications will be accepted and awards will be granted on a rolling basis, until all slots are filled or UIC’s Federal Work-Study funds have been depleted for the current academic year.)
  5. The application is reviewed by the Office of Undergraduate Research.
  6. Students and faculty will be notified via email about the results of the review.
  7. To help facilitate clear communication and transparent evaluation processes, we recommend that faculty and students set up a research experience plan with the help of this template.
  8. If granted a CURA, students will be hired by the faculty member’s department/research unit through processes communicated to departmental business managers by the Office of Undergraduate Research.
  9. The Office of Undergraduate Research will reimburse the sponsoring unit for the portion of Federal Work-Study funds not reimbursed by the federal government. The transfer will take place at the end of the fiscal year. The unit’s business manager will be sent a fillable spreadsheet and will be asked to provide the amount to be reimbursed along with the CFOAP of the account to be reimbursed.
  10. All required trainings and timesheet submissions will be administered through the employing department and UIC Student Employment.
  11. Departments are reimbursed for the portion covered by the O.U.R. before the end of the fiscal year upon completing the expenditure total verification process.

Questions or Comments

If you have any questions or comments please email: our@uic.edu