With IAP almost coming to a close and second semester just around the corner, the time has come for students to meet with their advisers and decide what classes to take next semester! However, many students are going above and beyond and signing up for Undergraduate Research Opportunity Programs, or UROPs. UROPs give MIT students a chance to create and perform their own experiments under an actual MIT professor. While some UROPs are paid, some are for credits, and some are just for experience and fun, many students signed up for UROPs over IAP and are continuing them throughout second semester.
Some of the most popular UROPs are in biology, chemistry, media lab, and management science. Ramkumar Venkateswaran, a freshman, took on a Course 7 (biology) UROP over IAP along with a multi-variable calculus course. He says it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of his life. “Even though I’m not sure I want to major in biology, I wanted to take advantage of MIT’s amazing program to gain experience and work side by side with an actual professor. All the long hours in the lab are worth it because I’m doing an experiment I created myself, it’s totally worth it.”
It’s becoming more and more common for students at the Institute to conduct research in one of a kind labs under some of the best professors in the world. Of all the opportunities MIT provides its students, I believe UROPs are the most important because they allow students to venture out into the real world and conduct experiments that truly interest them.