The Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) at Cal Poly Pomona, in partnership with Cypress College, has embarked on a journey of knowledge sharing and experiential learning. The Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program, celebrating its sixth anniversary this year, has served as a bridge connecting these institutions, nurturing students’ passion for research and innovation.
The program, specifically designed for STEM undergraduates, collaborates with community colleges to offer students an intensive eight-week faculty-mentored research experience. Throughout the program, participants receive essential lab safety training, actively contribute to research projects and showcase their findings through research posters or oral presentations at the annual summer symposium. Beyond enhancing research skills, SURE also paves the way for a seamless transition into the four-year institution experience.
The OUR has hosted 15 Cypress College students each summer, guiding them through the intricacies of research and innovation. These students, under the guidance of dedicated mentors, have delved into diverse fields of study, creating an enriching cross-disciplinary learning environment. Every fall, the Cypress Fall Research Symposium becomes the stage where these SURE students present the outcomes of their hard work and dedication. This year, the OUR was present to represent, support, and celebrate the achievements of SURE students.
When asking student presenters what their expectations were of SURE and how they feel now that they’ve completed their research, Alysah A., a Physics major recalls, “Before SURE, I was excited and had expectations of the program. Now that I’ve finished the project, I feel very proud of myself. It’s really amazing to see my research come together.”
Basil C., a bioengineering major, shares a similar sentiment, “This is my first research experience, so I was really nervous in the beginning. After attending SURE workshops, it helped me start my research and understand every aspect of it.”