In the summer of 2017, I did an undergraduate research program through SURF at Purdue and it was an awesome experience! Not only did I have a chance to do cutting-edge research related to a runoff issue (which is one of the fields I am interested in), the SURF program also provided me with activities to prepare me for graduate school including professional workshops on various aspects related to research (idea proposing, information searching, paper writing, results presenting, etc.). Research seminars on various topics were offered so that we could find potential areas for further study. Also, social events were included in the process. At the end of the SURF program, we each presented our research through either an oral presentation or a poster presentation. It was a valuable learning experience for me to communicate my research results with others!
The SURF program application system opens in spring semester, and various programs begin to be released on its website. It is a great summer opportunity to participate in the SURF program. Though the application process is competitive, all of the efforts are worth it! Not only do I have a clearer view of graduate school, I also got a chance to meet awesome people from numerous places! If you are deciding whether graduate school is something you want to do, I highly recommend you apply to SURF to test it out!