Looking Back and Looking Ahead

I recently met a professor who said he finds Princeton especially interesting this time of year because, all of a sudden, people are constantly “constructing things” across campus. Teams of facilities workers string cables from buildings. They drive fences into the ground. They erect massive tents and lay dance floors and stages underneath.

Farewell for the summer from the Princeton Correspondents on Undergraduate Research!
Farewell for the summer from the Princeton Correspondents on Undergraduate Research!

Yes, Reunions and Graduation are a few short days away. Strangely, it seems that while students are winding down—finishing exams, heading off to summer programs or perhaps beach trips for “dead week”—the university undertakes elaborate, if temporary, projects in preparation for the pomp and circumstance of late May and early June.

With the start of summer, there will be a respite in our blogging work at PCUR. But before we “sign off,” it’s worth taking a glance back at correspondents’ contributions. This year, the blog’s first, our team of students has shared experiences and insights of both depth and breadth. They offered tips on making your way through the writing process and enumerated the dos and don’ts for drafting funding proposals or completing IRB applications. They interviewed students about senior thesis projects. They proposed creative strategies for choosing a major or getting started on a new project. We even got the chance to hear from a correspondent during her semester abroad about how to continue developing research skills at a new institution. Continue reading Looking Back and Looking Ahead

Introducing the PCUR Blog!

PCUR word cloud

It is my pleasure to introduce you to the Princeton Correspondents on Undergraduate Research! The PCURs are a team of six undergraduate correspondents, from across class years and disciplines, working on research ranging from independent projects to senior theses. Here on this blog, they will share their experiences and insights.

Yet the stories they tell will extend beyond their specific projects. While research varies depending on subject matter, methodology, and discipline, there is at least one common thread tying the process together: it is not a linear path. We begin with a question; we set out on a quest to answer it. Soon enough, we find ourselves navigating sharp turns, unexpected detours, roundabouts, and even dead ends.

This non-linear journey makes the research process more exciting and enriching. And so as these young scholars reflect on the ups and downs of their research, we can all learn something, whether we are fellow students, advisers, or members of the Princeton or global community.

Without further ado, the Princeton Correspondents on Undergraduate Research welcome you aboard!

– Isabelle Laurenzi, Chief Correspondent