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UROC Opportunities


The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Center sponsors several Research and Academic Internship Programs. Each program is aimed to help guide the student toward their academic and career goals by providing relevant training and leadership development opportunities. 

What is an Academic Internship?

  • An academic internship is an educational strategy that connects classroom learning and real-life situations. It is a learning experience to help students achieve personal and professional growth and a competitive advantage in the global workforce. Internships provide students with a professional learning experience in which they gain new knowledge by performing tasks, working on projects, and receiving mentorship in a professional work environment.

  • Examples of these are the UCDC and UCCS Programs!

What is Research?

  • Undergraduate Research is defined by the Council for Undergraduate Research as "a mentored investigation or creative inquiry conducted by undergraduates that seeks to make a scholarly or artistic contribution to knowledge." The Research programs that UROC provides help students learn the research process and gain confidence through mentorship. Students in the UROC research programs also participate in SURI (the Summer Undergraduate Research Institute) to learn about applying to Graduate School and planning for future careers.

    • Examples of these are the CAMP, CV PATH, JGI*, SOAR, SURF, UROC-H, and LAEP* programs!




UCDC - UC Washington Program


Interested in spending a semester in Washington D.C.?

The Washington Program (UCDC) offers eligible undergraduate students an exciting opportunity to combine coursework, exciting field research, and unparalleled internship experience during a semester's residence in our nation's capital. This experience allows UC Merced students a chance to supplement their undergraduate education with real-world exposure and hands-on participation through internships. Learn more to apply for a future Fall or Spring semester.


UCCS - UC Center Sacremento

UC Center Sacramento (UCCS) educates California’s future leaders in the craft of politics and policymaking while making the expertise of faculty of the nation’s leading university available to decision-makers in the legislative and executive branches of government. 

UCCS academic internship program participants earn UC credit, maintain their financial aid eligibility, and gain valuable work experience while interning in Sacramento. Internships are available for almost any major! Participants take classes with students from all UC campuses, which provides an intellectual and social community throughout the Fall, Spring, or Summer. 

Visit the UC Center Sacramento Website


CAMP - California Alliance for Minority Participation

The NSF California Alliance for Minority Participation (CAMP) Program strengthens the quality and quantity of underrepresented students receiving baccalaureate degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) studies at the University of California. CAMP offers extensive resources and unique opportunities for students to excel in their respective fields of study. The CAMP program began at UC Irvine in 1991; currently, nine UC campuses participate in the program.

Click here for more information or Click here to view CAMP Alumni

CV PATH - Central Valley Pathways into Academics, Teaching, and Higher Education

The CV PATH Research Experience is a collaborative summer research opportunity for students from Las Positas College, Bakersfield College, and CSU Bakersfield to conduct faculty-mentored research.

Click Here for more information!


JGI - Joint Genome Institute

JGI is a 9-week program that allows students the opportunity to experience research with a national laboratory through two opportunities. A few students will have the opportunity to conduct research on-site at the Berkeley Lab and others will conduct remote data science research at UC Merced in collaboration with JGI scientists and UC Merced faculty mentors. The Department of Energy's Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI) is managed by the Department of Energy's Office of Biological and Environmental Research (OBER) to produce high-throughput DNA sequencing and analysis in support of its missions in alternative energy, global carbon cycling, and biogeochemistry. 

Click here for more information or click here to view JGI Alumni!

LAEP - Learning Aligned Employment Program

Interested in getting paid to conduct research during the academic year?

The Learning Aligned Employment Program (LAEP) is funded by the California Student Aid Commission to support students with financial need. LAEP provides funds to participating public postsecondary educational institutions to offer eligible students opportunities to earn money to help pay their educational costs while gaining career-related experience in their fields of study.

You will be hired as a UROC RA – Research Assistant - and will be paid to conduct research with faculty at UC Merced. Click here for more information about the LAEP program!


SOAR - Summer Opportunity for Advanced Research

The Summer Opportunity for Advanced Research (SOAR) program provides funding for UC Merced undergraduates with prior research experience to continue their projects at UC Merced. Qualified students with an interest in pursuing graduate school are especially encouraged to apply. 

Click here for more information!

SURF - Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship

The Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program is our newest research program offered to all undergraduate students in any discipline. This 9-week summer fellowship offers undergraduates the opportunity to work alongside faculty and graduate student mentors and provides graduate school preparation. 

 Click here for more information or click here to view SURF Alumni!

UC LEADS - UC Leadership Excellence through Advanced Degrees

The University of California Leadership Excellence Through Advanced Degrees (UC LEADS) Scholars Program is a two-year research and leadership training program designed to prepare UC Merced students for advanced education in STEM and careers in research, academia, government, and public service.

Click here for more information or click here to view UC LEADS Alumni.

UROC-H - Undergraduate Research in the Humanities

The goal of the UROC-H program is to engage a cohort of 20 promising undergraduate students each year in faculty-mentored research and prepare them for advanced education in the humanities and humanistic social sciences.

 Click here for more information or click here to view UROC-H Alumni!



Application Info Session

Attend an info session to learn more about UROC programs and meet the staff. 

Summer 2024 Application is closed!



How do I know which Opportunity is right for me? 

Answer the questions below to find out!

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More UC Merced Research Programs

UC Merced offers a wealth of research opportunities for undergraduate students interested in gaining practical experience. These opportunities vary across academic disciplines and include creative opportunities such as community-engaged scholarship and applied learning. To find out more information, check out the links below or visit our Partner Programs page!

Resources for UC Merced Students