FAQ for Undergraduate Faculty Mentors

Does my project qualify for this program?

This program is dedicated to interdisciplinary cancer prevention research projects. The projects must have connections with more than one academic area. The position must be a research internship, requiring students to be involved in the investigative process. All academic areas are welcome and encouraged to submit. If you have specific questions about your project proposal, contact cpip@purdue.edu.

I have a great undergraduate working in my lab. Can I submit a project description for him/her?

We encourage new research opportunities for students rather than fund existing relationships, but accept students already working in your laboratory.

What are the minimum qualifications for a student to participate in this program?

A student must be currently enrolled in a degree-seeking Purdue undergraduate program with at least sophomore standing during the program and a GPA of 3.0 or higher.  Priority is given to upperclassmen.

The individual faculty members may set additional requirements for their particular positions (class standing, GPA, major, coursework completed, etc.) when he/she enters the project description.

Will you assign a research intern to me or will I select the student?

The CPIP staff will pre-screen the students for the minimum qualifications and forward qualified applications to the Professor in Charge, who may then interview and select the student he/she would like to have as a research intern.

Do I need to provide my research intern with credit?

No, you are not required to provide research credits. Not all departments will grant these credits, nor will some allow research credits to be used on the student’s plan of study. You should talk with the student to determine what makes the most sense for both of you.

How many hours a week will this student work with me?

Students are required to spend at least 400 hours over the summer and 6-9 hours/week on their CPIP projects. The Professor in Charge may set the hours per week. If he/she is awarding credit, the number of hours should reflect the student's work (1 credit per 3 hours). The maximum amount allowable is 12 hours per week, which requires a discussion between the faculty and intern.

What is a learning contract?

The learning contract is an agreement between the intern and the participating faculty members. This document is available through the website and required of all participating research interns. The contract should outline the expectations of the internship and is used to evaluate the success of the internship. Faculty and students should consider the following topics for discussion:

  • Project goals (both overall and student specific).
  • Amount of work per week and additional course credits, if applicable (3 hrs = 1 cr).
  • Reporting requirements (we strongly encourage requiring a lab or research notebook).
  • Confidentiality, intellectual property ownership, and authorship rights.
  • Laboratory training, if applicable.
  • Other requirements (i.e. participation in lab meetings).

How do I evaluate and report the student’s progress?

Use the Learning Contract to set clear expectations at the start of the internship. Regular meetings and formal feedback are highly encouraged. The CPIP staff will maintain regular communication and faculty members are asked to report immediately any issues to the CPIP staff.

How long may I keep this student as a research intern?

By participating in CPIP, the student and faculty members are committing to a twelve-month internship that begins in the summer and continues through the following academic year. Internships are not renewable through the CPIP grant but faculty are able to continue working with the interns outside of the program.

How do I ensure confidentiality, handle lab access as well as other expectations?

Each research project will have its own unique requirements. Faculty members are strongly encouraged to discuss all expectations surrounding research issues with the students and include them in the learning contract.

Contact CPIP

To contact CPIP, please e-mail CPIP@purdue.edu