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- 10.2 Undergraduate Research and Practical Experiences
- 2015 Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP)
- 10. Curricular Education
Key Objective: 10.2 Undergraduate Research and Practical Experiences
The 2015 iCAP, chapter 10, objective 2 is, "Provide opportunities for undergraduate students to obtain research and practical experience by participating in independent study projects on sustainability topics."
Five to ten students will be selected each year for a ten-week summer program to conduct full-time research under the supervision of a faculty member to develop the scientific skills most important to success in a professional career (designing a research problem/experiments, problem-solving, interpreting results, communicating one’s science to various audiences, working in a team). Students will conduct research on real world problems related to sustainability at the campus level, in their communities or the national/global levels. They will learn to apply various tools, such as life-cycle analysis, cost-benefit methods and impact analysis, to assess, evaluate and design sustainable approaches to meeting societal demands.
Many students aren’t exposed to the broad and detailed aspects of practical implementation of sustainability principles through actual project implementation. There is a great desire by faculty and among our students to bring more meaningful experiences, exploration, and context to sustainability through using the campus as a living learning laboratory. Through a project and experiment-based learning approach student teams will be able to address real problems facing the campus and work together to propose solutions.