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OUR Immersive Research Internship Experience

A faculty-mentored research internship experience that helps students develop broad research and professional capacities.

Campus Partner Information


The OUR Immersive Research Internship Experience (IRIE) is a summer undergraduate research internship program available to all UMD undergraduate students.  The program is operated in collaboration with our well-established undergraduate research program, the First-Year Innovation & Research Experience (FIRE).

Students participating in IRIE:

  • Join one of the many IRIE Research Groups offered each year.

  • Enroll in a summer courseFIRE199 - Research Internship (3 credit course).

  • Engage in eight weeks of campus-based research with an IRIE Research Mentor.

  • Engage in fifteen hours of campus-based research each week.

  • Present their final research results at the Summer Undergraduate Research Conference each July (at the conclusion of IRIE each July).


IRIE Research Groups

Students participating in IRIE enroll in a section of FIRE199 that places them with a specific IRIE Research Group.  Most IRIE Research Groups are based on existing FIRE streams - but we also collaborate with campus partners to broaden the range of opportunities available.


Each IRIE Research Group has:​

  • Eight IRIE students.

  • A research environment that hosts participating students throughout the eight-week experience.  This research environment is typically open four days per week during most business hours of the day in a manner that allows IRIE students to complete their weekly on-site research requirement.

  • An IRIE Research Mentor.

IRIE Research Mentors

Each IRIE Research Group needs a clear research leader who is also the instructor of record for the affiliated FIRE199 course section.   We call this person the IRIE Research Mentor.

IRIE Research Mentors work on campus with their students for the eight-week experience, spending approximately 25 hours per week with IRIE students.  Additionally, as instructors of record, IRIE Research Mentors provide feedback on FIRE199 assessments to ensure students are learning and succeeding in their research education.


We work with campus partners to define and launch new IRIE Research Groups each year in a manner that allows academic units, research centers, and campus faculty the opportunity to work with motivated IRIE students. 

There are several benefits to starting an IRIE Research Group:

  • Leveraging the support of eight students to help drive your summer research agenda.

  • Establishing relationships with UMD undergraduates interested in continuing research.

  • Empowering the IRIE Research Mentor to develop mentoring skills through the mentorship of undergraduate researchers.

OUR drives this collaboration by providing required resources and processes and campus partners supplying other assets.


Student Recruitment

  • OUR oversees all advertising and recruiting processes.

  • OUR manages all student applications and waitlists.

Course Scheduling & Resources

  • OUR manages the scheduling of FIRE199 course sections.

  • OUR manages instructor assignments for sections of FIRE199.

  • OUR provides a template FIRE199 syllabus to all IRIE Research Mentors and offers academic support for curriculum and pedagogy.

Student Enrollment 

  • OUR manages communications with students and ensures enrollment in the correct section of FIRE199.

  • OUR manages course-based waitlists and student communication issues.

IRIE Research Mentor Appointments

  • OUR works with campus partners to understand how to manage appointments for designated IRIE Research Mentors.

  • Individuals in 12-month appointments can take on this role as a part of their defined workload.  Overloads are not offered due to the time required by the role (25 hours weekly).

  • Individuals on 9-month appointments will receive an instructional contract connected to FIRE199 and all aspects of the IRIE Research Mentor role.  The compensation is $6,000.

Weekly Seminar Series

  • OUR provides all infrastructure and content for the IRIE weekly professional development seminar series.

Summer Conference


The Research Environment

  • Campus partners must have a campus location where an IRIE Research Group can safely and effectively engage in research. 

  • While each IRIE Research Group has eight students, the research environment does not need to have the ability to host all eight at once as long as scheduling allows all group members to complete 15 hours of on-site work per week.

  • The research environment must have the equipment and consumables to engage in the targeted research.  OUR does not provide funding for research costs.

The IRIE Research Mentor

The campus partner must have an individual who can serve as the IRIE Research Mentor.

This individual will need to:

  • Finalize a syllabus for FIRE199 that outlines research objectives, expectations, and assessment deadlines.

  • Develop research-centered learning outcomes and ensure student engagement in the research aligns with those outcomes. 

  • Communicate announcements, assignments, and grades on ELMS.

  • Facilitate the active mentorship and research activities of eight undergraduate students assigned to the IRIE Research Group

  • Engage students in active research within the research environment. 

  • Be available to students for approximately 25 hours weekly to allow all IRIE students to conduct on-site research. 

  • Prepare students for presentations at the Summer Undergraduate Research Conference (SURC).


Interested in hosting an IRIE Research Group?

Complete the following IRIE Research Group Proposal by April 21, 2024 at 11:59 pm. Please see the guidance for submitting a proposal below.   


Our office will evaluate all proposals the first week of April 2024 and will be in touch regarding potential next steps within a few weeks thereafter.  Please note that our capacity is limited for 2024, and we do not expect to be able to launch all new proposals during this first year of collaborative operation with the campus research community.

Should you have any questions or issues submitting your IRIE Research Group Proposal, please contact us at

Components of the Proposal

  • Primary Mentor Name, Contact Information, and Affiliation 

  • Proposed Instructor of Record Name, Contact Information, and Affiliation

  • Project Description

    • Brief Research Project Description (1250 characters or less)

      • Please provide an overview of the research problem(s) or question(s) you aim to address with your IRIE Students,  any methods and approach you aim to use to address these questions and provide the expected outcomes or impact associated with the proposed research. 

    • Learning Objectives (500 characters or less)​

      • Please provide 2-3 learning objectives should IRIE students participate in your proposed research group. For example, "By the end of IRIE, students in my research group will be able to. . .". 

    • Research Location Information (500 characters or less)

      • Please describe the physical location (building, research lab, etc) in which you will host your IRIE Research group. Please address if the proposed research location and the equipment therein are able to facilitate the project as described.

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