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FIRE provides first-year UMD students with an inclusive faculty-mentored research experience that drives accelerated career readiness and opportunity.

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Research Experience

Our students use authentic tools of the trade to attack broadly relevant research objectives.  Outcomes are uncertain in a manner that allows students to thrive through challenge.

Authentic Methods

Use authentic & contemporary practices, dealing with real-world gotchas and uncertainties


Engage in the process of creating new knowledge.


Do work that is broadly relevant to the greatest challenges of our time.


Repeat or revise aspects of your research to address problems or inconsistencies, rule out alternative explanations, or gather additional data.


FIRE uses research experience, unforeseen outcomes, and even disappointment as vectors by which we empower our young professionals to embrace the power of uncertainty. 

Career Readiness

Fearless research drives fearless career readiness: our students develop communication, critical thinking, equity and inclusion, leadership, professionalism, and teamwork traits that employers are seeking.


Clearly and effectively exchange information, ideas, facts, and perspectives with persons inside and outside of an organization.

Critical Thinking

Identify and respond to needs based upon an understanding of situational context and logical analysis of relevant information.

Equity & Inclusion

Demonstrate the awareness, attitude, knowledge, and skills required to equitably engage and include people from different local and global cultures.


Recognize and capitalize on personal and team strengths to achieve organizational goals.


Knowing work environments differ greatly, understand and demonstrate effective work habits.


Build and maintain collaborative relationships to work effectively toward common goals, while appreciating diverse viewpoints and shared responsibilities.


The research experience and career readiness FIRE provides help students have experience and qualifications to pursue internship and at-graduation opportunities with confidence.

Opportunity for All

FIRE welcomes students of all backgrounds and levels of previous experience. 

Confidence in Next Steps

The research experience and professional development FIRE provides help students have experience and qualifications to pursue internship and at-graduation opportunities with confidence.

Shared Responsibility for Growth

Professional development and opportunity growth for all FIRE students is supported by everyone in the FIRE community - FIRE staff, faculty, Peer Research Mentors, and students.  FIRE students experience the personal and societal benefits of supporting each other while simultaneously growing themselves as individuals.

Learn More about FIRE

Learn more about the FIRE program and its many benefits for participating students.

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