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The Gatton Academy's Research


One of the added values of being admitted to The Gatton Academy is the chance to engage in real, undergraduate-level research projects while studying at Western Kentucky University.

Gatton Academy students are encouraged to participate in research both during the academic year and through research internships during the summer months. Research conducted on-campus during the academic year allows students to pursue their specific interests beyond their curriculum, working under the supervision of a university professor.

The Gatton Academy's strategic partnership with Western Kentucky University benefits our students by offering abundant research opportunities outside the doors of Florence Schneider Hall. WKU is praised for its longtime commitment to involving undergraduates in research. Gatton Academy students have access to research opportunities in any WKU department or discipline, including in the Ogden College's departments Agricultural and Food Sciences, Biology, Chemistry, Geography and Geology, Mathematics, Physics and Astronomy, Psychological Sciences, and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (including architecture, manufacturing sciences, computer science, and civil, electrical, and mechanical engineering).

Our students are encouraged to use their research experiences as a springboard for scientific competitions and to contribute to the scientific community. Indeed, it is one's research project that is the threshold experience that is required for many of the high-level scholarships and experiences our students compete. For example, our students are encouraged to enter the Regeneron Science Talent Search for high school students. Furthermore, our students have the chance to present their research at local, regional, and national conferences. Some students have even published scholarly papers with their research professors.

Being a part of a university research project, working in a WKU lab, and developing strong relationships with professors is part of the unique value that can be a part of the Academy experience. In terms of research, Gatton Academy students truly have infinite possibilities.

Two semesters or more of research, it should be noted, is a requirement for all Gatton students who wish to receive the recognition of Gatton Community Scholars and graduate the school with Honors or Honors with Distinction.

Learn more about available research areas at WKU.

Questions regarding The Gatton Academy's research program may be addressed by contacting Dr. Derick B. Strode, Asst. Director of Academic Services, at  270-745-3167 or at derick.strode@wku.edu.

Research Agreement

At the onset of each semester that a Gatton Academy student is involved in research, student and mentor sign and turn in this form to The Gatton Academy.

Research Areas

Gatton Academy students have access to conduct mentored research projects in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics with WKU professors as mentors.

Research Internship Grants

During the summer between junior and senior years, Gatton Academy students are eligible to apply for our Gatton Research Internship Grant.  Funded by a gift from school benefactor C. M. “Bill” Gatton, the program helps create internships that otherwise would not exist because of a lack of funding.

Research Outcomes

Gatton Academy students often have the chance to present and sometimes even publish results from their research.  Our Research Outcomes catalogs our progress.

Research Supplies Grant (RSG) Application

Faculty who mentor Gatton Academy students in a research project can receive a $250 grant once per academic year to purchase supplies or materials that the student may need to conduct research.


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 Last Modified 7/8/19