Grad-Undergrad Research Connections

Grad students, do you remember what it was like to be an undergrad curious about research and grad school? Did you have access to experiences and people to help you understand what it’s like and how to get involved? Many undergrads at UC do not, so we have created Grad-Undergrad Research Connections to help them get the guidance they seek.

The program is open to graduate students with at least one semester of research experience.

What Is Involved

As a member of this network, at a minimum you agree to communicate with undergraduate students each semester to talk with them about your research activity and life as a grad student.

If you wish, and with permission of your research advisor, you may also:

  • Invite the undergraduate student to attend lab meetings or paper discussions.
  • Allow the student to shadow you while you work.
  • Train the student in one or more of your research methods.
  • Mentor the student through a research project that supports your thesis or dissertation. Research Mentor Training is required.


The ability to convey your research so that people unfamiliar with your work can understand and appreciate it is a highly valued skill! As long as you are intentional about improving your communication skills, the more you practice, the better you get. Strong communication skills will benefit you as a presenter, educator, grant writer and author.

In addition, teaching someone about your work through paper discussions, shadowing, and training in research methods deepens your understanding of what you are doing and why. It will also inform your teaching or mentoring philosophy, both of which are important aspects of your professional portfolio. Those who mentor a student through a research project that supports their thesis or dissertation will benefit from increased productivity, increased publishing potential, and participation in an activity that future employers value.

Undergraduates who are interested in connecting with a graduate student should follow the process under Exploring Research Group Consultations.