February 27, 2013 | Borough of Manhattan Community College
BMCC Science professor David Krauss, whose areas of research include vertebrate paleontology and urban ecology, was just elected as one of the 24 Councilors of the Council of Undergraduate Research (CUR).
CUR, a national, non-profit organization, supports and promotes high-quality, student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship at the undergraduate level, and represents over 900 colleges, nationwide.
BMCC shares the CUR mission to support student/faculty research projects.
“Many of the BMCC faculty are working very hard to provide research opportunities for students,” says Krauss.
“We work closely with our students to bring them to a level where they can work competently within the latest research standards, which vary discipline by discipline. Overall, they also learn a base set of research standards expected in the work of college students at all levels of their education.”
Benefits to faculty and students
To support faculty in their research projects with students, CUR provides a mentor network that matches faculty seeking to develop undergraduate research programs, with experienced CUR faculty members.
CUR also provides a Registry of Undergraduate Researchers that matches students with graduate programs appropriate to their research focus.
In addition to these and other services, CUR members gain access to a national dialogue about undergraduate research, and an insider’s perspective on best practices in student/faculty research projects.
“This summer I will attend a meeting to learn how work being with BMCC students compares to research projects being done with students at other universities and colleges across the country,” says Krauss.
“I also hope to learn new ways to garner funding and support for the work we do at BMCC with our students.”
Solving challenges with colleagues, nationwide
CUR Councilors serve a 3-year term in one of seven disciplines—Professor Krauss is serving in the Biology Division—and a large part of what they do is problem-solve around research challenges faced by undergraduate institutions today.
As technologies change the way scientists gather, report and assess their findings, Krauss explains, staying current with research methodology and standards is even more critical to student success.
“It’s really important for undergraduates to do research so they can understand and apply the scientific process,” Krauss says.
“The earlier they start, the better. It prepares them for success in graduate school and science careers, and deepens their earliest experiences with concepts that support a lifelong engagement with science.”