The Summer Undergraduate Research Program at Simmons (SURPASs) is a paid, intensive summer research experience for undergraduate students and their faculty mentors. 

SURPASs students work with their faculty mentor on research in the sciences, mathematics, social sciences, humanities, histories, languages and the arts from May 14 - June 29, 2018. Accepted students receive a $3,000 stipend and housing on the Residential Campus. 

SURPASs is made possible by generous gifts from many alumni like Trustee Regina Pisa and Trustee Pamela Toulopoulos '73 as well as support from the Office of the Provost.


Applications are due by 4:30 pm on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 to the Office of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences (MCB C313). Download the application guidelines for students and faculty and the application checklist. 

When ready for submission, please complete our SURPASs application form.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible?
Full-time undergraduate students in all disciplines during the summer between their sophomore and junior years, and/or the summer between their junior and senior years. Graduating seniors are ineligible.
How long is the program?

Most SURPASs students will do their research beginning May 21, 2018 and ending June 29, 2018. Projects spanning a longer time period will be considered.

Participation in a weekly Wednesday seminar is required between these two dates. Students working off-campus will be able to participate in the weekly seminar online.

How do I propose a project?

SURPASs applicants are responsible for selecting a faculty mentor with whom she will work for the duration of the project. The proposed project should be driven by the student, but the proposal must speak to the faculty mentor’s general area of expertise. Students interested in a SURPASs grant should reach out to their desired faculty member early in the process.

More information can be found in the application materials.

What kinds of research do Simmons faculty members do?

Visit the faculty research section to learn more about specific projects from our faculty members. Browse faculty profiles in your department or school to find professors whose research interests match yours. 

You can also download Scholarship at Simmons to find a list of recent publications, presentations, exhibits, fellowships, grants, awards and other information that recognizes our faculty's scholarly and creative work.

What projects have other students done?
SURPASs projects allow students and faculty to work in a variety of disciplines. Here are some samples:
  • Emmaline Ashe and Ainsley Wilson: “Measuring the Effectiveness of Laundering Methods on Bacterial Presence on Scrubs: A Collaborative Study”
    Mentors: Liz Scott, Susan Duty 
  • Nina Chen: “Study of the Photodimerization of 4-Vinylbenzy Thymine and 4-Vinylbenzyl Trialkyl Ammonium Chloride Using UV-Vis Spectrophotometry and Gel Permeation Chromatography.”
    Mentor: Nancy Lee
  • Anne Crockett: “An Investigation of American Identity in the Needlework of New England Women in the Decades Prior to and After the Revolutionary War.”
    Mentor: Laura Prieto
  • Lindsey Johnson: “Analyzing the Use of Social Media as Methods of Political Action and Organizing Among African-Americans”
    Mentor: Catherine Paden
  • Sidney Jean: “Mixed Messages: The Conflicting Messages Women Receive about Weight through Family, Peers and Media”
    Mentor: Valerie Leiter
How many students will be selected

Up to 12 undergraduate students and their faculty members will be selected.

Tips for preparing a successful application?

Students can attend one of the open SURPASs information sessions to ask questions and learn more about the program. You can also make an appointment with the Writing Center for help in creating your Project Description. Finally, we recommend that you find your mentor as early as possible.