Application Overview

The application process begins with the initial proposal, which is created by UAH Faculty, Research Staff, and Librarians. Initial proposals are posted for students to review and apply to, then students are interviewed by the proposing mentor. After the student application period, the proposing mentor selects a student for their project and a final project proposal containing student, mentor, and project information is submitted.  Proposals are then ranked and awards offered. If the project is accepted to the program, the student completes the project under the direction of the proposing mentor throughout the summer program.

Application schedule:

Initial proposal period 

Sept 18th, 2023 to Oct 16th, 2023

Project description and student requirements for projects proposed by UAH Faculty, Research Staff, and Librarians

Student review and application period

Oct 23rd, 2023 to Jan 12th, 2024

Students review proposal descriptions, optionally meet with mentors, and apply for projects.

Students must apply using the application links on the current proposals page  

Final Proposals period

Jan. 15th, 2024 to Feb 12th, 2024

Final proposals created and submitted. Students and mentors can work together to create the final proposal if the mentor is amenable to that.

Awards announced

March 18th, 2024

Awards announced


Initial proposal period

UAH Faculty, Research Staff, and Librarians provide a project description and student requirements for their proposed project through a form emailed out by Academic Affairs at the start of the initial proposal period. Faculty, Research Staff, and Librarians interested in mentoring a project and open to student input are encouraged to submit a project description stating the area(s) of interest for their project and that project details are TBD with the selected student.

Multiple proposals may be submitted to both the RCEU program and the Honors Capstone Research program by the same mentor, but EACH proposal must be unique.

Please email the Faculty Director of RCEU if you’d like to propose a project during the initial proposal period and need the link.

Student review and application period

At the end of the initial proposal period, proposals will be posted on the current proposals page.

Students interested in the RCEU should carefully review the complete outline of regulations, eligibility and expectations before applying.

During this period students can review proposals and apply to projects they are interested in and meet the qualifications for.  Interested students are encouraged to reach out to proposing mentors with specific questions or to learn more about their proposed projects before applying. If a proposing mentor has stated the project details are TBD with the selected student, students should contact the proposing mentor to talk through project ideas before formally applying.

The student application includes basic information, a letter of interest for the specific project being applied to, and certifications that the student meets project and program requirements. 

Students must apply using the application links on the current proposals page in order to be official candidates for the program.

Final Proposals period

Proposing mentors will evaluate student applications and choose one student applicant, and optionally an alternate student, for their project after the student application period ends. It is anticipated that all applicants will be notified of the status of their application(s) by relevant proposing mentors by mid-spring semester.

During this period, proposing mentors, optionally with input from their selected student, create the final RCEU proposal. The final proposal contains the (optionally updated) program description, student duties, contributions, and outcomes, project mentorship information, student letter of interest, student transcripts, and proposing mentor’s letter of support for the student.

Mentors may run projects in both the Honors Capstone Research program and the RCEU. Multiple proposals can be submitted to both programs by the same mentor, but EACH proposal must be unique and offer an opportunity for a unique individual undergraduate participant. That is, in the case that a mentor submits more than one proposal to either or both programs, in order to maintain eligibility, there must be NO duplicate proposals OR candidates within AND across both programs.


At the end of the final proposal period, the UAH Faculty Senate’s Finance and Resources Committee will evaluate and rank all submitted proposals based, in part, on the following selection criteria

Level of Measurable Benefits to the Student (30%)

Tasks the student will perform; the student’s overall educational experience. This will be assessed based on the duties and outcomes given in the final proposal.

Quality of Tangible Contributions by the Student (10%)

The manner by which and the substance the student will contribute to the project, the amount of time for the student to learn instrumentation and technique versus actual experimentation or creative work. This will be assessed based on the contributions given in the final proposal.

Quality of Project Mentorship (30%)

The extent of collaboration between student and mentor; the extent of educational interaction between student and mentor; method and frequency of feedback from mentor to student. This will be assessed based on the statements of mentorship given in the final proposal.

Qualifications of the Student (30%)

This will be assessed based on an application statement made by the student, the transcripts from the student, and the letter of support from the proposing mentor.

Proposals that show a high quality of mentorship by the project mentor and that give high quality outcomes to a well-qualified, sincerely interested student will receive strong rankings. Applications from prior awardees that continue previous studies with no new substantial outcomes or contributions may likely receive lower rankings.

The committee strives to provide an equitable distribution of awards between colleges and departments.


After ranking, proposals will either be accepted with funding, accepted without funding, or rejected. The number of awards available is determined by the level of program funding for the current year. The ranking of the proposals determines which accepted proposals will receive funding. 

Proposals accepted with funding support the student through the program period with a stipend of $4,000. Please be informed that the stipend may impact the financial aid or other financial standings of the participant. 

Proposals accepted without funding allow the student to participate in all aspects of the program but without financial support. 

Proposals accepted to the program and funded with a student who can no longer participate in the program can shift to the alternate student submitted and the proposal ranking will shift based on the updated information.  If an alternate student is not included in the final application or also cannot participate in the program, the proposal automatically shifts from accepted with funding, to accepted without funding and goes to the bottom of the list.  If funding allows, proposals can shift from accepted without funding to accepted with funding from the pool of applicants for that project. Students must have officially applied using the link in current projects in order to be a candidate for the program.



If you have questions about the RCEU program, please contact us using the info below.

Mentors: Vinny Argentina, Faculty Director of RCEU or  256.824.6521

Students: David Cook, Director of Undergraduate Research, at or  256.824.5705

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