Research Experience for Undergraduates
Thank you for your interest in the ASPIRE and QoLT Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs.
Both programs are supported by the National Science Foundation and offer the same stipend, housing opportunities, and laboratory accommodations. We’ve consolidated the organization of the two programs to create an interactive experience for the participants and to promote collaboration across the programs.
Please read the program descriptions below to decide which one is a better fit for their interests and academic and professional goals.
American Student Placements in Rehabilitation Engineering: ASPIRE focuses its Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) Program on research in the rehabilitation engineering and assistive technology fields. Rehabilitation engineering employs a systematic approach to the design, modification, customization and/or fabrication of assistive technology for persons with disabilities. Research efforts in rehabilitation engineering are focused on identifying and addressing problems critical to achieving and maintaining the highest possible level of function in areas related to mobility, communications, sensory (e.g., hearing, tactile, vision), and cognition and in activities associated with employment, independent living, and education. The primary objective of the ASPIRE REU program is to provide an exemplary mentoring and resourceful environment that enables undergraduate students to 1) transition from dependent to independent thinkers, 2) develop a sense of excitement about entering an engineering or technical field and 3) be well prepared for their future careers.
Quality of Life Technology Research Experience for Undergraduates: The Quality of Life Technology Engineering Research Center’s (QoLT ERC) vision is to transform lives of people with reduced functional capabilities due to aging or disability through intelligent devices and systems. The QoLT ERC is a unique partnership between Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and the University of Pittsburgh, integrating CMU’s strength in the design, implementation, and technology transfer of intelligent systems, and Pitt’s strength in rehabilitation, health sciences and aging research. The primary objectives of the QoLT REU program are to excite undergraduate students about technology and engineering, engage them in cross-disciplinary research in QoLT to gain understanding of how to relate human functions (physiological, physical, social, and cognitive) to the design of intelligent devices and systems that aid and interact with people, expand their knowledge of emerging technologies in QoLT, and prepare them for graduate studies or professional careers in QoLT.
We are excited for another great summer of undergraduate research, are you? There is one application for both programs, so an applicant only needs to submit one application to be considered for both the ASPIRE and QoLT REU programs. However, we ask that you pick the program that matches your interests best. We will consider you for the alternate program if we feel that it is a better fit for you.