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Apply to the CNF & PARADIM REU

Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility (CNF)
Keeping the Ezra Promise (KEP)
Platform for the Accelerated Realization, Analysis, and Discovery of Interface Materials (PARADIM)

Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Programs
Sponsored by the National Science Foundation (NSF), CNF, KEP, and PARADIM


ONLINE APPLICATION DEADLINE: Wednesday, February 12, 2020 (5:00 p.m. Pacific, 8:00 p.m. Eastern)
Wednesday, February 19, 2020 (5:00 p.m. Pacific, 8:00 p.m. Eastern)
Thursday, February 20, 2020 (5:00 p.m. Eastern)
Monday, March 2, 2020 (via Email)

PROGRAM DATES: Tuesday, June 2nd, thru Friday, August 7th, 2020

Dear Students:

Thank you for your interest in the 2020 CNF, KEP, & PARADIM REU Programs. The
application information for all three programs is below. Please be sure to read carefully and submit your application by the deadline!

2020 Programs Summary

During the summer of 2020, the following four entities -- Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility (CNF),
Center for Transportation, Environment & Community Health (CTECH), Keeping the Ezra Promise (KEP), and Platform for the Accelerated Realization, Analysis, and Discovery of Interface Materials (PARADIM) -- will sponsor Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) programs from June through August, and work together to create a successful summer for all the interns. Engineering and science students with broad interests across disciplines focusing on nanotechnology are eligible to apply (see restrictions and eligibility requirements below) to the CNF, KEP and PARADIM Programs. (CTECH is not included in this application process having already filled their internship.)

The undergraduates taking part in these ten-week programs will receive hands-on nanoscience and technology Experiences through research, with applications to bio-engineering, chemistry, electronics, materials science, optics, optoelectronics, physics, and the life sciences -- and
transportation/civil engineering! The research projects are designed and supervised by faculty and technical staff. Interns then work with their assigned faculty and graduate students on projects, using the unique resources offered by each program. A convocation is held in August to allow interns the opportunity to present their work to their peers in a concise scientific presentation. Interns also must complete a written report, akin to a research paper, summarizing the findings of their research project. These reports are published and distributed to the interns and sites, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and many others.

Participants receive a $5,000 stipend, plus housing and reasonable travel expenses. Full participation
is mandatory in the ten-week program, convocation(s), final reporting, and program evaluation.

CNF, KEP, & PARADIM Applicant Restrictions and Eligibility Requirements

1] Cornell University students are not eligible to apply.
2] If you have already participated in a CNF, KEP, NNUN / NNIN, or PARADIM REU Program, you are NOT eligible to participate again.

3] You must be a U.S.A. Citizen or a Permanent Resident of the United States.
4] You must be 18 years of age or older by May 31, 2020.
5] You must be a sophomore CURRENTLY or higher (First Year Students are NOT eligible), and you must not be graduating before the end of the program in August 2020.
6] You must have valid health insurance coverage for the summer (proof of insurance is required for an award to be locked in).
7] You must not have already earned a four-year degree of any kind.

We have very specific goals of hiring underrepresented minorities, women, and undergraduates with no previous research Experiences -- although, not to the exclusion of well-represented undergraduates (as is evident from looking at photographs from any of our REU programs).

Application Requirements

Your completed application includes:

1. Your online application (profile, research preferences, registration of recommenders, etc.).

2. Your relevant college coursework in Science, Technology, Math and Engineering -- in chronological order, first to last, including your current semester/quarter. Please do not send a transcript now! If and when you accept an REU internship offer from us, you will then be required to submit an official transcript to Ms. Melanie-Claire Mallison, before your official award letter can be sent to you. (Contact info below.)

3. A Personal Essay. Your personal essay is critical to the selection process. It is through your words that we ascertain your ‘fit’ with our programs. Please submit a well-written essay, 1-2 pages long, in which you discuss the relationship between your present studies and a career in engineering or scientific research. As preparation, you may wish to discuss your career interests with one or more professors, and include any insights you gain from these discussions, and any other sources, which explain how this program might help you prepare for your future. Explain any honors and awards that you have received that are relevant, and discuss any prior research Experiences and / or any research field you are most interested in. If you do not believe your grades reflect your potential, please explain them in this essay. (Make sure your full name is on each page of your essay.)

4. A Resume. This resume should focus on your scientific achievements and activities. List any honors and awards that you have received that are relevant, as well as any prior research experience.

Items 1-4 constitute your online application, which must be submitted by Wednesday, February 12, 2020 (5:00 p.m. Pacific, 8:00 p.m. Eastern)

5. If you are a citizen of another country AND a permanent resident of the USA, you MUST submit a copy of your Green Card (both sides) for your application to be complete. You may snail mail the copy or email it to Ms. Mallison as a JPG or PDF attachment. (If you are a citizen of another country and you ARE NOT a permanent resident, you are not eligible for our programs!)

6. Two Letters of Recommendation from faculty members who know you well and can comment with authority on your research potential. OR! If you can identify a person better qualified to evaluate your abilities, i.e., a graduate student TA, a co-op adviser, or past REU Program / industry mentor, please feel free to have that person write one of your recommendations.

Recommendations must be uploaded online by Wednesday, February 19, 2020 (5:00 p.m. Pacific, 8:00 p.m. Eastern).

Application Notes

  • Find program specifics for CNF, CTECH & KEP Programs at and PARADIM at
  • Do not include your social security number on any document. It is illegal for us to distribute your SS#!
  • The application will list Research Fields & Projects specific to each REU program and ask you to rank your preferences. This is how we will decide your appropriateness for the programs. Again, this application process is for the CNF, KEP, and PARADIM Programs. CTECH has had a separate application process which is already concluded.
  • If you receive an internship offer in March and accept that offer, we will require proof of health insurance coverage AND an official transcript before your award is locked in.
  • You will receive two automated emails; one when you submit your profile and one when you submit your application. You will also be notified via email by the Program Application Coordinator, Ms. Melanie-Claire Mallison, when your application arrives and when it is complete. If you do not receive these emails, there is a problem and you should contact Ms. Mallison directly.

Ms. Melanie-Claire Mallison
CNF REU Program Coordinator
Program Application Coordinator
250 Duffield Hall CNF
Ithaca NY 14853-2700

"If we knew what we were doing, we wouldn't call it research." Albert Einstein

IN ADDITION! Cornell PARADIM Partners with the Johns Hopkins University PARADIM REU Program!

While we will share the CNF KEP PARADIM applications with the JHU REU staff, please visit for specifics on the JHU REU application process. For starters, if you are interested in this JHU PARADIM REU Program, then by February 1st, please send your statement of interest, resume, and three recommendations to

The Johns Hopkins University PARADIM Research Experiences for Undergraduates Opportunity for Materials Discovery:

JHU PARADIM REU participants are integrated with highly aligned REU programs at JHU Homewood Campus where they participate in additional scientific enhancement opportunities including a professional development lecture series, social outings in Baltimore and Washington DC, and the Hopkins REU poster symposium with a diverse scientific cohort.  For 2020, JHU PARADIM REU interns receive a $5,909 stipend and up to $3,541 in qualified housing, travel, and sustenance expenses.

Three Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) positions are available via the JHU PARADIM REU Program using the facility located on the Johns Hopkins University (JHU) Homewood campus in Baltimore, Maryland. The REU students will work in collaboration with Professor Tyrel M. McQueen and Dr. W. Adam Phelan in advancing materials discovery of novel electronic and magnetic quantum materials.

Individuals with interest in computation, programming, and materials are especially encouraged to apply.



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your online application must be submitted by wednesday, february 12, 2020 (5 pm pacific / 8 pm eastern)
your recommender has until wednesday, february 19, 2020 (5 pm pacific / 8 pm eastern) to upload your recommendation letter

All 2020 CNF KEP PARADIM REU application components must be received
by the final deadline of Thursday, February 20, 2020

Application FAQs

Your complete application includes: your profile and application forms (including relevant coursework), your essay and one-page resume, and two required recommendations.