REU Site: Interdisciplinary Research Experiences in Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automated System Design
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Industrial automation is essential to modern day manufacturing. Even in these troubled economic times, U.S. manufacturers are still looking to hire highly skilled workers in industrial automation and control. Interdisciplinary Research Experiences in Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automated System Design is a Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) site supported by NSF''s Division of Engineering Education and Centers. This site will provide a research environment for 8-10 undergraduate students per year to learn about mechatronics, robotics, and automated system design. The goals are to help participants to understand the research process, acquire laboratory skills, and expand their perspectives on science and engineering research, and to have a lasting influence on their career paths. The site will target students who have limited opportunities to participate in research on their home campuses or who belong to groups that are traditionally underrepresented in engineering and science, including women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities.Undergraduate participants will attend a ten-week summer program in which they will be immersed in a graduate school environment with access to outstanding infrastructure. Activities will include joining a research group led by a faculty mentor, completion of a research project, and participation in weekly seminars, field trips, and career development workshops. They will also participate in activities and share housing with other summer research program participants at Texas A&M University. At the end of the summer, they will present their research at a campus-wide REU poster session. During the following academic year, the program will provide a mechanism for participants to continue to interact with their mentors. This will help the students to connect their research experiences to their overall course of study and to achieve success in courses of study leading to a baccalaureate degree in a STEM field."The site is co-funded by the Department of Defense in partnership with the NSF REU program."