BUILD Research Mentorship Overview
BUILD Research Mentors play a critical role in the undergraduate research experience. A well-matched pairing of BUILD scholar with a BUILD research mentor is critical to the success of this training program.
Training with a BUILD research mentor operates on an apprenticeship model: Trainees learn from their mentors by observing and assisting with their mentor’s research. Mentors serve as role models for the trainees and as a resource for information. The research mentor provides the undergraduate researcher with rigorous guidance regarding research activities, academic achievement, graduate education and professional goals.
The overarching objective of this collaboration is to develop the undergraduate researcher's confidence, research skills, and critical thinking abilities in order to succeed in their undergraduate career, in graduate school and as research professionals.
There are three types of mentoring opportunities. Each is focused on students at differing points in their undergraduate career.
BUILD Associate Trainees
The BUILD Associates Program is a one-year research training program to support sophomores who have expressed an interest in research. The primary goal of the Associates Program is to give students the opportunity to receive research training to allow them to determine if they would like to apply to continue as a BUILD Scholar. Associates are required to participate in a paid two-week PREP training program the summer before they start their research. During the academic year, Associates receive hourly pay to participate up to 15 hours a week in research training including participating in their mentor’s research program and a one-hour weekly learning community seminar.
BUILD Scholar Trainees
The BUILD Scholars Program continues where the Associates Program leaves off. This two-year program, including summers, provides additional research training, including presentation skills, career development planning, and GRE preparation.
Scholars are expected to complete independent research projects that will be presented as posters at the annual BUILD research conferences. They are also expected to apply for summer programs at Ph.D.-granting institutions during the second summer and then doctoral training programs in their second year. Scholars receive a monthly stipend, tuition assistance, and assistance with travel expenses to professional meetings and conferences. They also participate in a weekly learning community.
BUILD Fellows Trainees
The new BUILD Fellows program was created for those might have missed out in participating in the Scholars program. This one-year program, including the summer, is similar to the first year of the Scholars program and is meant to help students in their last year of undergraduate education at CSULB. Unlike the Associates and Scholars program, however, Fellows are required to have mentored research experience before being admitted. Fellows are expected to take the GRE the summer at the beginning of the program and to apply to enter Ph.D. programs in health research careers in the Fall of next year at the time of the application.
Both BUILD Associates and Scholars are required to log hours in research labs beyond those required in any research courses they are taking. During the academic year, research hours should average about 15 hours per week. Trainees are also required to attend research colloquia, participate in a weekly learning community, and enroll in research-focused coursework.