URT Descriptions - 2022

Opportunity Descriptions - 2022 Undergraduate Research Training (URT) Program

Opportunities for Undergraduate Research Training are below.

*Some training opportunities are able to be done remotely. This is noted in the title/description.*

The 2022 URT Application period has closed.

Questions? Email steve.hale@unh.edu for more information.


Dartmouth College - 2 undergraduate positions

Lead Researcher/Primary Research Mentor: Katie Hixon

Project Description:

Three-dimensional (3D)-printing fabricates structures through the deposition of materials (e.g., polymers and ceramics) layer by layer. Not only has research greatly expanded upon this process to improve structure and mechanics, but the overall technology has become increasingly accessible, often directly used with advanced imaging such as computed tomography (CT). Despite the many benefits and growing interest in 3D-printing as constructs for tissue engineering, there remain drawbacks in this technology, including resolution. Thus, it is advantageous to explore integrated technologies to improve the characteristics (e.g., porosity, mechanical integrity, etc.) of 3D-printed constructs. This project will focus on integrating soft, polymer scaffolds with complex 3D-printed architecture to assess material integration, as well as the potential for cell infiltration and matrix deposition.

Prerequisites: Laboratory experience

Desirable: 3-D Printing, Solidworks

Dartmouth College - 1 undergraduate position

Lead Researcher/Primary Research Mentor: Chenfeng Ke

Project Description:

The student will work on the end group modification of polyethylene glycols and subsequent 3D printing gel formation.

Prerequisites: finished organic chemistry I and II


Dartmouth College - 1 undergraduate position

Lead Researcher: Ian Baker

Primary Research Mentor: Bram Kuijer

Project Description:

The student will assist the graduate student in sample preparation and experiments of various metals used in biomedical and biomaterials uses. Student will learn to use equipment such as high and slow speed saws, autopolisher, potentiostat, tensile tester, and electron microscopes. The student will engage also in electrolyte (acidic, basic, and simulated body fluid) preparation and handling. The student will also learn to identify different types of corrosion and characterize the effects of the electrolyte on the metal. This is an important skill in many scientific fields and the experience will provide a specialized knowledge of the subject as well as use of commonly used equipment in engineering.

Prerequisites: Coursework in General Chemistry

Desirable: Coursework in Materials Science

Dartmouth College - 2 undergraduate positions

Lead Researcher/Primary Research Mentor: Katherine Mirica

Project Description:

Textile-based electronics hold promise for enhancing health monitoring, alleviating disability, increasing personal safety, and tracking of environmental pollution. Modern wireless connectivity and cloud computing offer unparallel opportunities for broad deployment and integration of wearable electronic devices into real-time control of industrial systems and into personal protective equipment. Smart textile sensors, in particular, have the potential to advance the impact of wearable electronics through breathable, versatile devices and garments capable of electronically transduced interactions with the local environment. This project focuses on the integration of conductive materials onto textile substrates through self-assembly to create electronic sensors with relevance to biomedical analysis or development of personal protective equipment. Researchers will learn and develop bottom-up techniques for integration of conductive materials into textile substrates and characterize these constructs using electronic measurements, electron microscopy, and X-Ray techniques. Researchers will contribute to the assessment of smart textiles as chemical sensors and study their robustness to withstand chemical and physical tests.

Prerequisites: General Chemistry

UNH Durham- 1 undergraduate position

Lead Researcher/Primary Mentor: Kyung Jae Jeong

Project Description:

The student will participate in developing novel bioinks for 3D bio-printing. Mesenchymal stem cells will be embedded in the bioinks and differentiated into various linages (osteoblasts, chondrocytes, adipocytes) within the printed microstructures. The students will learn rheology, 3D printing, basic cell culture and several biological assays throughout the project.

Prerequisites: None

Desirable: None

UNH Durham- 1 undergraduate position

Lead Researcher/Primary Mentor: Jinjin Ha

Project Description:

This project is to characterize martensite transformation kinetics for SS304 L material, which is used for the trauma fixation hardware, using in-plane biaxial testing machine. The student will perform experiments in John Olson Advanced Manufacturing center in UNH and report the post-processing result for stress/strain analysis and martensite volume fraction measurement.

Prerequisites: None

Desirable: Lab experience. Coursework in mechanics and materials science

UNH Durham - 2 undergraduate positions

Lead Researcher/Primary Research Mentor: Nathan Oldenhuis

Project Description:

Students will isolate pDNA and proteins from bioreactor based fermentation processes and then chemically alter them to make precursors for materials. These materials will be used for applications in drug delivery, gene production, and cellular scaffolding.

Prerequisite: Organic Chemistry

Desirable: Biochemistry, Molecular Biology

Keene State College - 2 undergraduate positions

Primary Research Mentor: Md Ahasan Habib

Project Description:

This research aims to provide a background for three-dimensional (3D) printing applications for cell scaffolding. Three-dimensional bioprinting is a rapidly growing field attempting to recreate functional tissues for medical and pharmaceutical purposes. Perfusion bioreactors may offer better fresh growth medium to encapsulated cell compared to traditional static incubation technique. In this research, we will continue to improve our already designed and prototyped bioreactor in terms of performance. To do this, we may need to modify design, prototype, simulate results, and compare them with the real time data. 

Students will be trained before starting the work. Students should also have the ability to work in a team, finish the work in a timely manner, update the work to the primary researcher, maintain proper communication, follow the lab working protocol, manage the test data and maintain records.

Prerequisite: Completed coursework in CAD

Desirable: Experience in manufacturing projects

UNH Durham - REMOTE ONLY - 1 undergraduate position

Lead Researcher: Harish Vashisth

Primary Research Mentor: Amit Kumar

Project Description:

This project involve smodeling and simulations of biomolecules. The student(s) will learn to set up and run computer simulations of multi-particle systems and model intermolecular interactions under different conditions (for example, temperature and solvent). The student(s) will also learn to extract data from computer simulations using visualization and analysis tools.

Prerequisites: Chemistry and understanding of biological molecules. Student must have a laptop.

UNH Manchester- 2 undergraduate positions

Lead Researcher/Primary Mentor: Won Hyuk Suh

Project Description:

 Students will learn how to work with both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, peptides, proteins, polysaccharides, synthetic polymers, and bioactive small molecules to formulate new bioinks to 3D print human stem cells and perform needed physicochemical and biological characterization experiments. Depending on student interest and background, students can focus on two or more of the following topics: (1) peptide/protein synthesis/characterization, (2) rheology, (3) cell culture, (4) molecular biology techniques, (5) microscopy, (6) numerical/statistical analysis.

Prerequisites: General Chemistry or General Biology or Calculus

UNH Durham - 1 undergraduate positions

Lead Researcher/Primary Research Mentor: Linqing Li

Project Description:

This research project aims to build a vascularized cancer aggregate model in a 3-dimensional hydrogel system to understand cell-matrix interaction, investigate tumor invasion and screen therapeutic drug candidates for cancer treatment. Students will learn to fabricate various types of biomaterials, characterize mechanical properties of these biomaterials,  learn how to generate cell aggregates that contain multiple cell types, maintain general cell culture, process tissue samples, and familiarize fluorescent staining protocols and imaging processing, some of the key techniques in the field of biomedical and tissue engineering.

Prerequisite: Cell culture, Biomaterials, Tissue engineering

Desirable: Cell Biology, Materials Science