We believe that undergraduate research, with careful mentoring of a faculty supervisor, can be one of the student's most meaningful and significant experience at F&M. In some departments research can be started in the summer after the first year; in other departments the experience is begun in the junior or senior years. In the senior year it is generally accompanied by course credit under the rubric of an Independent Study.
F&M is particularly proud of its summer research program, usually referred to as the Hackman program. This 10 week period of intense research allows for focused attention to a scientific problem and may result in coauthorship of a publication in a peer-reviewed journal. This program is funded in part by an endowment created by an alumnus, William Hackman and his wife Lucille. Funding is also provided by faculty grants from agencies such as the National Science Foundation, Research Corporation, the Petroleum Research Fund, National Institutes of Health and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Students may be invited by a faculty member to participate in their research or they may seek admission to a faculty research group. It is not uncommon for students to do research with a faculty member for more than one summer and then combine that experience with Independent Study in the senior year. Some students have had as many as six co-authored publications from their F&M research.
Examples of student research are provided in the Student Spotlights section.