Mae Lynn Chan
During this past summer I was fortunate enough to receive an REU position at Lehigh University. It was a competitive program that selected about 25 students from a couple hundred applications. The program and the school together were able to provide us with housing, as well as pay us. (The housing was great. We were placed in one of Lehigh's sorority houses, and each had our own rooms.)
This was my first research opportunity, but it was easy to apply. The National Science Foundation has an REU web page devoted to helping students find research opportunities based on their area of study. Here is the web page <http://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/reu_search.cfm>. I searched for a biophysics REU program and the site provided me with the school, area of study, and link to the application page. There were so many options that I applied to only a few of the list that was provided.
Going into it, I was nervous because I did not know what I was going to be doing or if I was going to be able to do it. However, after I started, everyone was really good about helping me learn the basics that I would need. There wasn't pressure to do too much or anything I could not handle. The research I conducted was in biophysics, and I worked with powerful microscopes and lasers. I researched a phenomenon called diectrophoresis (DEP). A possible application could be it's use as a biologically friendly means of separating micro- and even nano- meter scale