Undergraduate Blog

To submit an item for the undergraduate blog, email Greg Coughlin.

May 20, 2020

NCSA has a history of nurturing innovative concepts, and some of the best ideas have come from highly motivated, creative undergraduate students. The Students Pushing Innovation (SPIN) internship program was launched to provide University of Illinois undergraduates with the opportunity to participate in hands-on research and contribute to interdisciplinary projects covering focused research areas in Culture and Society, Earth and Environment, Bioinformatics and Health Sciences, Material and Manufacturing, Data and Computational Sciences, Physics and Astronomy, and Digital Agriculture. The SPIN program is now accepting applicants for the 2020-2021 academic year. To apply, please visit our website, spin.ncsa.illinois.edu, and click on the “Mentors” tab to learn about the SPIN projects, and then click on the “Apply” tab. The application deadline is June 1, 2020.


SPIN Academic Year 2020-21 program details:

Program dates: August 24, 2020 – May 5, 2021 (Fall and Spring semesters)

Work 5 hours/week for 16 weeks each semester

SPIN interns earn $12.50 per hour and are paid as Undergraduate Hourly employees

Any UIUC undergraduate student in good academic standing and enrolled in 12 credit hours each semester

No restriction on year of study or major

International students are eligible

May 11, 2020

Please see the attached flyer for information on a Structural Engineering Opening.


May 7, 2020

Please see the attached syllabus for TAM 416/AE 452 - Introduction to Nonlinear Dynamics and Vibrations, which is being offered Fall 2020.


May 7, 2020

Looking for a one-year professional Master’s program?  Develop your skills in human factors, engineering, and design. Improve usability of health technology for everyone.


Check out the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign MS in Health Technology! Accepting applications for Fall and scholarships are available. 


For more information or to sign up for an info session: https://ahs.illinois.edu/ht-overview


Email healthtech@illinois.edu for more information!

May 4, 2020

Please see the following message for information on the James Dyson Award:




I hope you are doing well and staying safe. I wanted to reach out and introduce myself, my name is Samantha and I’m the North American associate manager of the James Dyson Foundation, the charitable arm of Dyson. Understanding this is an uncertain time, especially for students, I wanted to get in touch and see what the best way to connect with you and your engineering/design students was to discuss the James Dyson Award.


I’ve provided some of the key information below about the award, who can enter and where to go for more information. It would be great if you could pass this along to your students and encourage them to enter. If students have any questions, they are welcome to get in touch with me directly.


What is the James Dyson Award?

The James Dyson Award is an international design award that celebrates, encourages and inspires the next generation of design engineers. The challenge is simple: design something that solves a problem. We’re also excited to announce that in addition to the International winner, the JDA will crown a second winning project, focused on sustainability.


Who can enter?

It is open to current university students of engineering, product design and industrial design – and those who have graduated in these subjects in the last four years. We'll ask to see official documentation that proves it. The deadline for entries is on Thursday, July 16.  


What can you win?

Students that enter have the opportunity to win $2,500 as a national winner and $35,000 as an international winner, along with a donation of $6,000 to the departments that supported them. New this year! We will offer an additional $35,000 prize for the sustainability award winner, which is the best entry that addresses an environmental issue. The award not only provides an opportunity for students to commercialize their ideas through funding, it also provides an international media platform and exposure which has allowed previous winners such as MarinaTex, a home compostable material designed as an alternative single-use plastic films, to develop into businesses.


If this is something you’d like to bring to your “virtual campus” or learn more about, please let me know. I have a PowerPoint, I could send you with more information and several digital assets, if that would be helpful when sending a message to your students. Otherwise, let me know if you’d like to find a time to chat!


Best wishes,



Samantha Kuderna

Associate Manager, James Dyson Foundation