I’m conducting original research . . .now what?

Our students have been in the lab for 3 weeks already!  And while we still have two weeks left, its time to start thinking about what you’re going to do next and how you can use this experience in your future.  Here are a few ideas:

1. Obtain a letter of recommendation from your lab mentor.  The best case scenario is to try to get a letter of recommendation from both the lab PI and the graduate student or post-doc you worked most closely with.   Be sure to ask for this letter of recommendation on lab letterhead.

2. Ask you lab mentor how/if its OK for you to be involved with the lab at the end of your SSTP experience.  Are you going to communicate via email?  Would you like someone to email you when the results of the project you’re working on become finalized?  Will you continue to work in the lab after the completion of the program?  Do they know any researchers near your hometown they could introduce you to?

3.  Find out if its OK to publish work you’ve done as part of the SSTP experience.  Remember, the data is the property of the faculty mentor, so you will need to obtain permission before you start writing anything for submission.  If you get their blessing, a few nice places to try to publish research would be JESS or JEI.

4. Get your mentor’s blessing to enter your project in a research competition!  Great national competitions are JSHS, Seimens, and Intel.

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