CNF Research Experiences for Undergraduates

The Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility (CNF) is a national user facility that supports a broad range of nanoscale science and technology projects by providing state-of-the-art resources coupled with expert staff support. CNF has been serving the science and engineering community since 1977! Over 700 users per year (50% of whom come from outside Cornell) use the fabrication, synthesis, computation, characterization, and integration resources of CNF to build structures, devices, and systems from atomic to complex length-scales.

The Cornell NanoScale Science & Technology Facility Research Experiences for Undergraduates (CNF REU) Program takes full advantage of this diversity of research and offers projects encompassing chemistry, nanoscale electronics, materials processing, physical sciences, engineering, and life sciences, with a strong inter-disciplinary emphasis. Our REU Undergraduate Researchers interact with researchers from academia and industry, work with Cornell faculty, graduate students and the CNF staff, learn hands-on nanofabrication processes, train on a variety of nanofab tools, and become independent nanoscale researchers in their own right.

The CNF REU Program specializes in hiring undergraduate students from two-year colleges, students with no prior research experience, students from those backgrounds that are underrepresented in the STEM fields, and students who are the first in their family to attend college. Successful applicants are those undergraduates with an educational and personal background in the sciences, especially those who major in STEM fields. Research at CNF encompasses engineering, life sciences, and the physical sciences (descriptions below), and has a strong inter-disciplinary emphasis. We expect our REU Undergraduate Researchers to have a basic knowledge in biology, chemistry, electronics and or physics.

The CNF REU Program runs for ten weeks, from approximately the first week of June thru the second week of August. The first two weeks of our program include attending our short course, Technology & Characterization at the Nanoscale (CNF TCN), and attending our three-part New User Training -- then intense tool trainings. The summer typically concludes with a Nano-Convocation on Cornell campus so that principal investigators, mentors, and CNF staff can attend, and then a three-day National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI) REU Convocation . Finally, each CNF REU Undergraduate Researcher submits a program evaluation and writes a two-page report that is published as part of the CNF Research Accomplishments.

CNF REU Undergraduate Researchers receive a $6,000 stipend, plus housing and reasonable travel expenses. And of course, the program covers all reasonable research expenses! Full participation in the ten-week program -- trainings, convocations, final reporting, and program evaluation -- is mandatory.

Altogether, the CNF REU Program offers an excellent ten-week introduction to nanotechnology and a preview of a scientific research career.


The 2024 CNF REU Application is now CLOSED. 



Past Year REU Programs

2023 REU Program Link Button
The 2022 CNF REUs at Kentucky
2021 REU Program
2019 REU Program
2018 REU Link Button
2017 REU Program Button Link
2016 REU Program Button Link